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Shoulder Stand is called the queen of postures in yoga.

In his book, Light On Yoga, B.K.S. Iyengar devotes 24 pages to the pose as he regards it as the great panacea, helpful for healing virtual all ailments.

Although there are countless variations to shoulder stand, this variation with yoga bolsters has the following benefits:

  • Accessible even to people with neck and shoulder injuries.
  • Stimulates your thyroid.
  • Balances your endocrine system.
  • Stimulates your circulation, benefiting the flow of blood and lymph.
  • Restores your energy.
  • Boosts your immune system.
  • Calms your mind, moving you into a meditative state.
  • Relieves swollen legs.
  • Calms the digestive system.
  • Relieves migraines and headaches.
  • Eases anxiety and depression.
  • Because you can stay in this pose for a longer period of time, you may receive even more benefits than practicing the pose in the middle of the floor.

Inversions are typically practiced towards the end of a yoga sequence.

This supported shoulder stand with yoga bolsters is the ninth pose in my restorative yoga sequence.

You can read the entire sequence at this link.

Here’s how to practice this pose:

  1. Line up two yoga bolsters with the short ends facing one another on either a yoga mat or soft cushy carpet.
  2. Take a yoga strap and make a loop wide enough to go around the fatty part of your calf muscles – your gastrocnemius.
  3. Place the yoga strap around your calf muscles. This keeps your legs in place. The more supported you are in the pose, the more your nervous system can relax.
  4. Sit on top of the yoga bolsters and lie back.
  5. Position yourself so that your upper back and shoulders come off the top of the bolster.
  6. Bring your arms out to the side.
  7. Turn your palms up so that your chest can open.
  8. Keep your neck completely straight.
  9. Breathe! This is a great pose to practice your yoga breathing. You can learn how by watching the FREE videos at this link.
  10. Shut your eyes. Allow your mind to relax. You can drift into a meditative state.