Vasisthasana is a balancing pose that helps you find alignment and strength within your body without putting in too much effort. This asana requires you to shift the whole weight of your body on one side. The weight has to be balanced with the help of one leg and one foot.
The best part about this asana is that it offers a lot of benefits without demanding too much effort. If you are interested in learning side plank in yoga, this guide is for you. Here, we are going to cover Vasisthasana meaning, the benefits of Vasisthasana, precautions and safety tips, and much more. Read till the end so that you do not miss any point about this balancing asana.
The name of this asana comes from the Sanskrit language where “Vashistha” means “wealthy”, and “Asana” means “pose”. Adding all two words, we get the name of the side plank pose in Sanskrit. Apart from its literal meaning, you can also understand it like a yoga asana that makes you wealthy in terms of mental and physical health.
Here is a list of some Vasisthasana benefits that you get by practising the asana regularly:
- When you do a side plank pose and balance your weight on one side, you put pressure on the muscles of your body and tone them.
- To find the balance, you deeply engage your core muscles. Regular practice of side plank yoga pose will increase your core strength.
- Side plank yoga improves your ability to concentrate and focus on the movements of your body.
Prep Poses For Vasisthasana
The following poses can warm up and prepare your body for side plank in yoga:
- Reclining Hero Pose (Supta Virasana)
- Downward-Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
- Reclining Hand to Big Toe Pose (Supta Padangusthasana)
- Half Moon Pose (Ardha Chandrasana)
- Wide-Legged Forward Bend (Prasarita Padottanasana)
- Plank Pose (Phalakasana)
How to Do Vasisthasana - A Step-by-step Guide
Here is an easy step-by-step guide that will help you practice Vasisthasana yoga the right way:
- Stand straight in tadasana, place your palms on the mat, and keep your legs back.
- Now assume the plank pose, lift your left hand, and place it a little ahead of the left shoulder.
- Now press your left palm on the ground and turn your body to your left.
- While making this move, the outer edge of your left foot should be touching the mat while your right foot should be stacked over the left one.
- Keep your right hand in the air and rest your body on the right hip.
- At this point, you have to balance your body using your left foot and left hand.
- Breathe out, stretch your right leg, bend your upper body so that you can reach your right big toe.
- Grab the right big toe using your right hand’s thumb, index finger, and middle finger.
- Now, lift your right leg up, straighten your right arm, rotate your head to the left and gaze at the ceiling.
- This is the Vasisthasana yoga pose, you have to pause here for about 20 to 30 seconds taking deep breaths.
- While exiting the Vasisthasana pose, you have to first release your big toe, bring your right foot on the left one, and your right hand on your hips.
- Breathe out and turn your whole body to the center.
- You can repeat the Vasisthasana sequence pose to the other side just by changing your legs and hands.
Vasisthasana pose can warm up your body and make it flexible enough to practice other balancing and strength asana. Here is a list of some follow-up poses that you can practice after doing Vasisthasana sequence:
- Supported Headstand (Salamba Sirsasana)
- Handstand Pose (Adho Mukha Vrksasana)
- Extended Triangle Pose (Utthita Trikonasana)
- Downward-Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
- Extended Side Angle Pose (Utthita Parsvakonasana)
- Four-Limbed Staff pose (Chaturanga Dandasana)
- Warrior II Pose (Virabhadrasana II)
- Feathered Peacock Pose (Pincha Mayurasana)
Modifications & Props
To reap the most benefits of Vasisthasana, you can use the following props and modify the asana according to your body comfort:
- Yoga Strap: When you do this yoga for beginners, it might be a little tough to touch your toes as your body is not flexible enough. You can make this step easy simply by wrapping a yoga strap around the big toe of the raised leg. Once you bind the strap, you can hold this yoga strap instead of touching the toe. Not only will it help you stretch the leg but you can also stretch your arm according to your comfort.
- Chair: Another prop you can use for a variation of Vasisthasana is a chair. For this modification, you have to take support of the chair to rest your side body while you are assuming the side plank pose. This Vasisthasana modification requires lesser effort and is easier to do than the regular Vasisthasana pose.
Here is a list of some side plank yoga pose variations that you can add to your home workouts:
- Vasisthasana Crunch: To do this variation, you have to lift the right leg and bend the knee after getting into the side plank yoga pose that we just mentioned above. Raise your right elbow and the right knee. Keep your forearms extended upwards while doing the Vasisthasana Crunch.
- Vasisthasana Twist: To do this variation, you have to bend your right knee and place your right foot on the ground once you reach the stacked pose. Cross your legs, keep your right foot beside your left thigh and left leg straight. Now, raise your right arm and look towards this raised arm.
- Vasisthasana Variation Tree Leg: To do this variation, you have to slide your right foot over the left thigh once you reach the stacked pose. Now, raise your right arm and look towards this raised arm.
From the meaning of side plank pose in Sanskrit and how-to-do guide to benefits and precautions, now you know all important points about Side Plank pose. Visit this guide again or join online yoga classes if you face any difficulty while performing this asana.
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