What Is Mountain Pose (Tadasana)
If you have ever attended a Yoga class or tried out yoga on utube, there is a 99% chance that you have stood in Mountain Pose (Tadasana). Yoga is a form of self-care and exercise recommended for fitness and mental health and assists with sleep and stress reduction.
Mountain Pose, or Tadasana in Sanskrit, is a standing yoga pose that is considered to be the foundation pose of all standing poses in yoga. In addition, it is often used as a starting point for other yoga poses and sequences. The pose helps improve posture, strengthen the legs, and tone the abdomen, hips, and back muscles.
To practice mountain pose, stand with your feet together and your arms at your sides. Ground through the four corners of both feet and engage your thigh muscles. Draw your tailbone downward and lengthen your spine upward. Bring your shoulder blades toward your spine and open your chest. Draw your arms back and engage your triceps. Relax your shoulders and gaze forward. Take a few deep breaths in this position and focus on grounding down through the feet and lengthening through the spine. Keep reading for a step-by-step tutorial on how to do Mountain Pose a bit further on.
It’s an effective pose, but attention to alignment and keeping the body neutral is critical for benefits and avoiding injury.
Once you have mastered Mountain Pose, you can practice it at just about any time you need it.
What is the Sanskrit Name for Mountain Pose?
This can be confusing as it can be referred to by two different names known as Standing pose or Prayer pose.
Tadasana (tada) – Mountain – Asana (Pose)
Samasthiti – Sama (equal) Sthiti ( called this in Ashtanga Yoga )
Tadasana is the most commonly used Sanskrit name for the pose known as Mountain Pose. However, it is sometimes called Samasthiti, which means “Equal Standing” or “Even Standing” in Sanskrit.
Samasthiti is a term used in traditional yoga lineages to refer to the starting position of many yoga asanas, including Tadasana. This name emphasizes the importance of finding balance and stability in the pose, both physically and mentally. In addition, the term refers to the idea of standing evenly on both feet and finding balance throughout the entire body, which is the goal of the Tadasana and is the foundation of many yoga practices.
In some ways, Tadasana and Samasthiti are two different names for the same pose, but with slightly different emphasis. Tadasana focuses on the pose’s alignment, while Samasthiti emphasizes the balance and stability that should be present in the pose.
How Do You Do Mountain Pose ( TADASANA ) Step-By-Step?
Mountain Pose is often referred to as one of the foundational yoga poses. This is because many poses are based on and involve, on some level, mountain pose as the baseline pose.
While many think that Mountain Pose is just standing still, it involves many parts of the body, and if you can master this pose, you are well set to learn and master many more poses. Posture, balance, core strength and stability are all core yoga skills you develop in mountain pose that are also very helpful in everyday life.
Mountain Pose can be learnt step-by-step, and daily practice will help you build the confidence to hold the pose correctly and get the benefits.
Step 1: Stand Tall
- Begin by standing in the middle of your yoga mat, facing the front with the mat laying lengthways. Your feet should be together. However, if you are just learning, you can modify this by placing your feet hip-width apart.
- Distribute your weight evenly across both feet, feeling grounded and connected to the earth. This is also referred to as finding the four points of the soles of your feet.
- Engage your calves, then the thighs and keep your knees straight but soft.
Step 2: Align Your Feet and Toes
- Ensure that your big toes touch each other and your heels are slightly apart, creating a small space between them. If you have just started, remember you can have your feet hip-width apart.
- Gently lift and spread your toes, then place them back on the mat, maintaining even weight distribution.
Step 3: Engage Your Thigh Muscles
- Tighten your thigh muscles and draw them upward, creating a sense of strength and steadiness in your legs.
Step 4: Lengthen Your Tailbone
- Inhale and lengthen your tailbone down towards the floor, also tilting it forward so that you are not arching your back but that your back is aligned. This action helps to keep your pelvis in a neutral position.
Step 5: Activate Your Core
- Draw your lower abdominal muscles in ( your core ) up and slightly toward your spine. This will engage your core and support your lower back.
Step 6: Relax Your Shoulders
- Let your arms and hands relax and hang naturally at your sides.
- Roll your shoulders up, back and down, slowly and deliberately, opening your chest. Again, check your back that you are not overarching.
- Feel the shoulder blades move together, but avoid tensing your neck.
Step 7: Lengthen Your Neck
- Gently lengthen your neck by lifting the crown of your head toward the ceiling. Imagine that there is a string attached to the top of your head, and it is pulling you up and lengthening your spine.
- Keep your chin parallel to the floor, and relax your facial muscles. If your tongue is pressed up to the top of your mouth, take a deep breath and relax it to the bottom of your mouth.
Step 8: Breathe Mindfully
- Take slow and deep breaths, feeling the expansion of your ribcage with each inhale, and the release with each exhale. Each inhale should lift your chest and not bulge your belly. Breathing into your diapram will assist you in lifting your chest rather than breathing into your belly.
Step 9: Maintain Steady Focus
- Keep your gaze straight ahead, focusing on a point in front of you, which can help with balance and concentration. Once you have mastered the pose, you can hold it with your eyes closed and feet together. However, do not try this immediately, as without the correct alignment, it can cause you to sway or lose balance.
Step 10: Hold the Pose
- Stay in Tadasana for 30 seconds to a minute or as long as you feel comfortable. It’s an excellent pose for transitioning into other yoga postures.
- If you are holding Tadasana to assist with calming you down or removing or reducing stress. Hold it as long as you please with occasional shoulder rolls and head movements to maintain a deliberate but relaxed spine alignment without causing tension.
Step 11: Release the Pose
- To release the pose, exhale and gently return your feet to a neutral position.
Tadasana may seem simple, but it’s a foundational pose in yoga that builds the awareness and alignment necessary for more advanced postures. Practising Tadasana regularly can help improve your posture and overall body awareness. remind yourself to focus on your breath and maintain balance and stability while in the pose. Rushing this pose can mean you are not ready for more advanced movements and do not have the core strength to attempt other movements without modification.
What Are the Chakra Associated with Mountain Pose?
Sacral Chakra (swadisthana)
Root Chakra (Muladhara)
Mountain Pose, or Tadasana, is not explicitly associated with any particular chakra, but it can help you to balance and align your chakras.
The chakras are energy centres throughout the body, each associated with different physical, emotional, and spiritual states.
As Mountain Pose is a foundational pose, it may assist in opening and balancing the root chakra if that is blocked. The base or root chakra, known as Muladhara in Sanskrit, is located at the very base of the spine and is linked to feelings of safety and security. Tadasana can help ground you and create a sense of stability, which in turn can help balance the base chakra.
Maintaining the proper alignment in Tadasana will help maintain balance and grounding. This can lead to feeling more connected to the earth and improve overall well-being and stability. In addition, the correct alignment of Tadasana may help to align the spine, which may align all chakras. Doing that may have a cascading effect on balancing all chakras, thus promoting an overall sense of balance and well-being.
Discover the Incredible Benefits of Mountain Pose (Tadasana)
Mountain Pose, or Tadasana, is a versatile yoga pose that can benefit various ailments, injuries, and conditions. Some of the ways that Tadasana can help include:
- Improving posture: Tadasana can help improve alignment and posture by strengthening the back, legs, and core muscles.
- Relieving lower back pain: By strengthening the muscles of the lower back and legs, Tadasana can help to relieve and reduce pain and discomfort in the lower back.
- Improving balance: Tadasana can help to improve balance and stability by grounding through the feet and lengthening through the spine.
- Reducing stress and tension: Tadasana can help reduce stress and tension throughout the body by promoting relaxation and grounding.
- Improving concentration and focus: Tadasana can help to increase focus and concentration by promoting relaxation and balance in the body and mind.
- Helping people with varicose veins: the pose can help to increase blood flow to the legs and reduce the pressure on the veins.
- Helping with respiratory issues: Tadasana can help improve breathing capacity and reduce symptoms of respiratory conditions such as asthma by opening the chest.
- Assisting with digestion: Tadasana can help to tone the abdominal muscles and improve digestion.
- Helping with headaches and migraines: the alignment of the spine can impact releasing tension on the head and neck, a common trigger for headaches.
These are all general guidelines for how Tadasana can benefit you. However, it is essential to remember that everyone is different, and you may need to modify this pose to suit you. Tadasana can also be practised in a chair, so it can be great to learn to calm down those stressful moments at work or for those needing to practice yoga sitting.
If you are in doubt or having trouble, consult a yoga instructor to assist you with correct alignment. Make sure to advise your chosen Yoga instructor of all your conditions so that you can get the best possible advice.
Consult your medical professionals before starting any exercise routine if you have specific conditions.
Practising yoga can help you physically and mentally. If you want to start practising at home, you can choose from a range of free classes on utube. I add classes weekly and am a qualified 300-hour Yoga instructor and soon-to-be 500-hour qualified instructor. For a complete list of all the free classes and meditations that I provide, you can view my channel here.
If you have any specific requirements or requests concerning Yoga Classes or meditations, let me know, and I will do my best to accommodate a class just for you. For private lessons online or in person, contact me directly via email to enquire or make a booking.