In a former life I taught deportment and modelling to men, women and children, with some making it to the international arena, most wanted ‘refinement’.
I always started with posture – Tadasana, and then I taught students how to walk correctly.
In yoga postural alignment is key to all poses. Starting with the feet and working upwards.
In Tadasana you learn to stand firm and erect like a mountain. Tada in Sanskrit means “mountain”. The purpose being that most people do not balance perfectly on both legs. Leading to ailments which can be avoided. Tadasana teaches you the art of standing correctly and increases your awareness of your body. It is the foundation stone for other asanas. Practicing it gives rise to a sense of firmness, strength, stillness, and steadiness.
The benefits of standing correctly are good posture and good health. When you walk into a room you are judged on your appearance, even before you open your mouth. Standing tall and erect as opposed to slouching just might win you that job, or special someone.
With time the body degenerates, and the effects of aging are felt on the spine, legs and feet. I recommend you find your Tadasana, tone your butt and walk tall.
- Stand with your feet together on a smooth uncovered floor. Feet aligned with each other, with big toes and heels touching. If it is difficult for you to stand with your feet together separate them about 7cm. Rest your weight on the centers of the arches of the feet. Keep the heels firm and toes extended. Stretch out your toes and keep them relaxed.
- Press your feet firmly down on the floor and stretch both your legs upward. Keep both ankles in line with each other. Your legs should be perpendicular to the floor and aligned to each other. Tighten your kneecaps and quadriceps and pull them upward. Draw your hips inward by compressing them as well as your buttocks.
- Extend your arms along the sides of your body, with palms facing your thighs and fingers pointing down. Keep the head and spine in a straight line. Stretch your neck without tensing the muscles. Pull your lower abdomen in and up. Lift your sternum and broaden your chest. Breathe normally during all the steps of the asana.
Press your heels, as well as the mounds of your toes down on the floor. This will place equal pressure on the outer and inner edges of the feet. Guard against balancing on the front of the feet. Now consciously rest most of your weight on your heels. Hold the pose for 20-30 seconds.