If you’re having trouble sleeping, and stress and worry seem to be engulfing your mind, yoga should be your go-to remedy to induce relaxation and help you go to bed. Poses such as Child’s pose and Plough pose work to calm your mind and relax your entire body.
Plough Pose (Halasana)
A good way to imagine this pose is to think about the plow, a popular farming tool used in the fields to prepare the soil for planting crops. Plough pose, also known as Halasana, prepares the body for sound rejuvenation.
‘Hal’ means plough or plow and ‘Asana’ means pose or posture. A more advanced pose practiced by yogis, plough pose improves the flexibility of the lower back and works on breathing techniques to induce relaxation.
Advanced yogis are able to hold this pose for long periods of time and boost feelings of relaxation and confidence by performing this pose.
Plough Pose Directions:
- Start by lying down on your back with your legs straight and your arms by your sides.
- As you exhale, gradually start to lift your legs straight up towards the ceiling without bending your knees.
- Then, lift your hips off the floor.
- Now, slowly lift your lower back as well and support your body by holding your lower back with your arms.
- Bring your legs towards your head and move them over your head as you try to touch the floor above your head with your toes.
- Once in this position, focus on your breathing and hold this pose for one to five minutes.
- As you exhale, gently roll back to the starting position.
Benefits of Plough Pose:
There are immense benefits that can come out of practicing the plough pose on a regular basis, including a relaxed state of mind and improved flexibility.
Other benefits of performing the plough pose include the following:
- Promotes calmness in the brain
- Gives the shoulders and spine a good stretch
- Stimulates the thyroid glands
- Stimulates digestive function
- Alleviates stress and fatigue
- Extremely healing for backaches and headaches
- Treats symptoms of insomnia
Plough Pose Precautions:
When performing exercises that involve twisting and straining your body in anyway, it is important to consult your doctor to make sure you are able to carry out this practice, especially if you are recovering from any injuries or suffer from any chronic conditions.
It is best to avoid practicing plough pose under the following circumstances:
- Severe neck injury
- High blood pressure
- If you are pregnant and are a beginner to yoga
- Heavy menstruation
- If you have never done any yoga before
Plough Pose Recap:
Plough pose is an extremely effective pose to practice when experiencing symptoms of insomnia, stress, or even backaches. If you are a beginner to this pose, make sure to practice this pose under supervision in order to prevent injury.
When you perform this pose, make sure to relax your shoulders and keep them slightly lifted towards the ears to keep the neck and throat soft. Actively try to bring the shoulders towards your ears whenever you feel them pulling away.
Updated by Siya Rajan on 06/20/2018
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Courtesy The Yoga Institute, Santacruz (E), Mumbai
Plough Pose. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.tummee.com/yoga-poses/plough-pose
Editors, Y. (2007, August 28). Plow Pose. Retrieved from https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/plow-pose