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Vrikshasana: Meaning, Steps, Benefits

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Vrikshasana

Vrikshasana is one of the standing yoga posture. It is a basic level yogasana. Moreover, Sages in Hinduism performed this posture as tool of austerity or Tapasya.

Though we could find the first mentioning of the posture only in Gheranda Samhita of seventieth Century, there are other evidences for the fact that it has been in practice since ancient times. An ancient rock temple at Mamallapuram that belongs to Seventh Century CE shows a man performing a posture similar to Vriksasana. Hence it is evident that this posture is one of ancient yoga poses.

Vrikshasana Information

Pose NameVrikshasana
Sanskritवृक्षासन
IASTvṛkṣāsana
English NameTree Pose
OriginAncient
LevelBasic
GroupVrikshasana
TypeLeg Balance

Vrikshasana Meaning

Vriksasana is the combination of two Sanskrit words: Vriksha and Asana. Vriksha means tree and Asana means posture. Therefore we call this pose Tree Pose in English.

Vriksasana Practice Procedure

Safety and Precautions

The performance of this posture involves leg balance. Those new to the practice, especially the elderly people, should take care. Performing the posture near a corner where two walls meet is safe. In case of loosing balance, they could reach for the wall and avoid falling on the ground.

Preparatory Poses

This one is easier to master. Therefore it requires no preparatory pose. However, performing Tadasana will makes this pose more easier to master.

Vrikshasana Steps

Step 1

Stand erect. Keep a distance of one feet between the legs.

Step 2

Raise your arms up keeping the palms closer in Anjali Mudra. Inner sides of the upper arms should touch the ears. Keep the eye sight on any object in front of you.

Step 3

Raise the right leg up and place it on the left thigh similar to the leg position in Ardha Padmasana.

Step 4

Breathe normally. Keep the position as long as it is comfortable.

Step 5

Release the right leg down. Repeat the above steps with the left leg.

Duration

Initially it is not possible to keep the position for more than a couple of minutes. For the purpose of meditation, one can extend the duration up to three hours. As a strict practice of austerity, it can be increased for a longer duration, even for months.

Vrikshasana Benefits

  • By Tree Pose as a practice of Tapasya, it is possible to get psychic powers like clairvoyance, clairaudience, and the like.
  • As a practice of meditation, one can control his mind and achieve control over sense organs. It helps to maintain Celibacy and progress towards the goals of meditation.
  • Tree pose as the practice of postural yoga gives the performer leg balance by which one can master advanced yoga postures like Garudasana, Natarajasana, Ardha Chandrasana and the like.
  • It aids in getting the flexibility of the spine and hips, opening up the hips and groin.
  • This posture improves balancing of legs. As a result, one gets overall stability and poise. Moreover, the muscles of calves and thighs are tuned.
  • It tones up the arms and shoulders, thereby improving the flexibility and functions.
  • Tree Pose is good for sciatica and back pain.

Vrikshasana in Gheranda Samhita

Gheranda Samhita describes 32 yoga postures.

Stand straight on one leg, bending the right leg and placing the right foot on the root of the left thigh. Standing as a tree on the ground like this is Vriksasana.

– Gheranda Samhita 2.36

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