Dandasana (Staff Pose)
Just as Tadasana, Mountain Pose, is the foundation for all the standing poses, Dandasana is the foundation for all seated poses. Staff refers to a walking staff. These tools lend balance and support to travelers navigating difficult terrain. Our staff is the spine, which serves as the central support of the body. If a walking stick is too curvy, it is more cumbersome than supportive. This is also true of our spines. This pose helps promote healthy spinal curvature, while providing a space for the mind to get grounded. A daily practice of Dandasana can support you through life’s rocky terrain, offering a space of health for the body and stability for the mind.
What to do:
Begin sitting on the floor with your legs extended.
Rest your hands by your hips.
Flex the ankles gently.
Sit tall in your spine, with the shoulders relaxed.
If it feels safe, close your eyes.
Notice your weight distribution. Imagine your pelvis is a bowl of water. Balance the bowl so no water can spill out.
Shift your weight on your hips until you find center.
Take at least five mindful breaths, then stay as long as you like.
When you begin to slouch, notice that, and gently sit up strait again.
Builds healthy spinal curves.
Encourages healthy range of motion in the hips.
Strengthens upper back.
Grounding for the mind.
Sit on the edge of a folded blanket if the hips are tilting back.
Place a rolled up yoga mat under the knees to relieve tension in the legs.
Practice with hips against a wall, but do not lean against it.