If you are new to yoga, you probably find it hard to contort your body and perform certain yoga positions. Eventually, many people end up abandoning yoga due to either laziness or pain. If such has been the case with you, start looking for ways to make the movements easier. Yoga is supposed to make you feel relaxed, calm, and stress-free. If you have just started, consider giving wall yoga a try. It is much easier to perform and offers the same health benefits as traditional yoga. Are you ready to supercharge your health? Give this article a thorough read to learn about Wall Yoga poses and how they help you improve your physical health.
How Many Wall Yoga Poses Are There?
When it comes to yoga, there is no set limit on the types and variations you can perform daily. The idea is to maintain mind-body coordination and to destress your body (1).
Performing yoga may improve your flexibility, make you more mobile, and alleviate pain (2).
For starters, a wall provides support and stability, allowing beginners to establish balance. They can also get into a yoga routine and form habits with their body. Lastly, after practicing with the wall individuals can transition into traditional yoga more efficiently.
What Are The Best Wall Yoga Poses For Beginners?
Wall Yoga poses range from standing to your legs up against the wall. Listed below are some of the best yoga wall poses for beginners.
Downward Dog Wall Yoga Pose
We start the list with the downward dog wall yoga pose or the Adho Mukha Svanasana. It is one of the primary wall yoga poses that offers flexibility and may strengthen your front thigh muscles.
To perform the downward dog wall yoga pose:
- Place a yoga mat near the wall.
- Get into a plank position near the wall with your feet touching the wall
- Inhale and engage your body by forming an arch
- Inch your hip out towards the ceiling with your palms pressed on the mat and your heels placed on the wall to get support
- Maintain this position for a while
- Exhale and get into a resting position by pushing your body to the ground and extending your arms on the ground
- Maintain this position for a while and then get back into the starting plank position
Perform this yoga asana repeatedly with the wall to master keeping your heels locked into place.
Read More: Sit Your Way To Wellness: Unravel The Benefits Of Chair Yoga
Chair Yoga Pose With Wall
The Chair Pose, or Utkatasana, is another basic wall yoga pose for beginners. It supports knee balance and keeps them in place.
To perform chair wall yoga:
- Stand near a wall with your body facing the wall
- Place your hands on the wall shoulder-wide apart
- Inhale and slowly glide your hands up the wall. Gradually get your lower body into a sitting position.
- You will feel pressure on your legs and feet. Place your knees on the wall for support.
- Imagine you are sitting on a chair. It would help if you did not let your feet or hands get out of coordination.
- Hold this position for 4 to 5 breaths.
Repeat the chair yoga pose to strengthen your lower body, especially the muscles in your ankles
Upward Facing Wall Dog Pose
The upward-facing wall dog pose or the Chaturanga Dandasana flexes your back and may help your back to get better and stronger. It may also reduce wrist pain and helps yoga-doers align their body (5).
To perform Chaturanga Dandasana:
- Stand near the wall with your body facing the wall.
- Place your hands shoulder-wide apart on the wall. Bend the elbows slightly so you stand a little near the border.
- Ensure your feet and hands are shoulder-width apart.
- Work your hands parallel to your shoulders and place your fingertips on the wall.
- Arch your body back and face the ceiling.
- The idea is to flex the spinal cord and reduce pressure.
- Hold this position for a while.
- Return to the starting position and repeat this Wall Yoga pose 2-3 times.
Camel Wall Pose
The camel wall pose or the Ustrasana works similarly to the upward-facing dog wall pose. This pose may enhance flexibility and help yoga-practitioners to maintain alignment.
To perform the Ustrasana:
- Sit near the wall on your knees with your hands placed on the wall shoulder-wide apart. You must place a block behind each foot for support to perform the camel pose.
- Place your hands on the back of your pelvis. Position your feet near the wall.
- Slowly arch back and hold each block with your hand so your body bends back.
- Face the ceiling and hold this position for a while.
Repeat the wall yoga pose to enhance your flexibility and establish balance.
Virabradhasana Wall Pose
If you are fascinated by those complex vertical wall yoga poses but cannot perform such poses, the Virabradhasana wall pose is for you. It is easy to perform and helps practitioners to maintain solid mind-body coordination.
To perform Virabradhasana Wall Pose:
- Stand a few inches away from the wall.
- Slowly pull your left leg back by bending forward.
- Place the leg on the wall so your body forms a straight horizontal line with your other foot on the ground.
- Clasp your hands together and maintain this pose for a few breaths.
These are a few basic wall yoga poses you can do any time of the day. Performing these restorative wall yoga poses improves flexibility and endurance and helps you transition into traditional yoga.
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Legs Up The Wall, Why Is It Good For You?
The daily hectic work routines can be pretty stressful. In such chaos, one craves peace and relaxation. If you are in the same boat, you must try Viparita Karani or the legs up the wall pose.
It is a part of one of the seven primary inversion yin yoga wall poses and is quite popular among yoga enthusiasts due to its immense health benefits. Also, it is easier for beginners to do and helps them unwind.
Inversion yoga poses are where your body is upside down with your feet high up in the air and your head on the ground. They are relatively easier to practice and don’t require much flexibility and strength.
Legs up the wall pose may also work wonders for your mental and physical health. Practicing it once or twice a day destresses the body and relieves anxiety.
To perform the legs up the wall pose
- Get a yoga mat or a pillow and perform this pose near the wall.
- Sit with your right shoulder and your right leg touching the wall. Your knees must bend, with your heels touching your hips.
- Slowly arch your body towards the right and lie on the mat by placing your hips near the wall.
- Push a pillow underneath your hips and extend your legs against the wall to get comfortable. You can keep your arms by your side or fold them however you like.
- Maintain this position for a while, and slowly push yourself away from the wall using your heels.
- Repeat this restorative yoga pose one or two times a day.
While doing the legs up the wall pose, you can do a bit of self-massage to enhance your overall yoga routine. Massage your hands or stimulate the acupressure points to relieve digestive, sleep, or other health-related problems (3).
To get out of the Viparita Karani state, slowly pull your legs towards your chest so that you are hugging them and gently roll over on one side. You can also do legs up the wall variations such as the butterfly, straddle, or one leg up the wall pose. To perform these variations:
For 1 Leg Up The Wall Pose
- While keeping the legs up the wall position, move your left leg and place it horizontally on the ground, touching the wall.
- Maintain this position for about six breaths and inch it back up.
- Repeat the same with your other leg.
For Butterfly Pose
- While keeping the legs up the wall position, bend your knees so that the soles of your feet face and touch each other.
- Your body must be touching the wall.
- Maintain this position for about four breaths and then return to the legs up the wall pose.
Read More: Sit, Stretch, And Soothe: Chair Yoga Sequence For A Relaxed Mind And Body
For Straddle Wall Pose
- From legs up the wall, get into a butterfly position.
- Extend your legs wide to form a scissor-like shape with your legs.
- Maintain this position for a while.
Sometimes, people experience a tingling sensation in their feet and legs due to extending their feet for a long time. To avoid this, consider bending and pulling your legs towards your chest to minimize the sensation and then return to the yoga position.
Also, do not put your body at a 90-degree angle, as this impedes blood flow in the hips. Make an arch and place your body a few inches from the wall.
While legs up the wall pose looks convenient and practical, individuals with specific health conditions must avoid it. These include people with glaucoma, hypertension, or excessive fluid retention problems. The reason is that doing Viparita Karani increases the intraocular pressure in people with glaucoma, causing eye strain, which is unsuitable for them. People with hypertension or high blood pressure problems should also avoid this inversion pose as it increases blood pressure (6).
Although they can do this yoga after stabilizing their blood pressure, they should do it sparingly. Individuals with excessive fluid retention problems like liver or kidney failure must also avoid legs up the wall since it causes fluid retention.
What Are Yoga Poses With Wall Support?
The ease of the yoga poses against the wall makes them popular among beginners. With a slight variation, they unlock new movements and techniques that relax their body and make them feel super relaxed. Some of the best poses in yoga with legs against the wall are
Arms Up Wall Pose
The arms up or the Baddha Konasana wall pose stretches your hips and legs. To perform this relaxing wall yoga pose:
- Place a yoga mat near the wall and sit on it with extended legs. Ensure your hips and back are touching the wall.
- Interlace your hands and hold them high above your head near the wall.
- Bend your knees and place your feet together in a way that the soles of the feet are pressed together.
- To prevent discomfort, you can place a block underneath your hips or bend your elbows slightly.
- Do slow, deep breaths and feel it going in and out of your body.
Triangle Wall Pose
The triangle wall pose is good for stretching your entire body. To perform this sequence,
- Stand near the wall. Ensure your feet are shoulder wide apart with your arms hanging by your side.
- Walk your right leg towards the right with your foot facing right. Your left foot must be facing outward.
- Bend so that your right hand reaches your right knee and your left hand extends high up your body.
- Maintain this position for a while and repeat this sequence for the other side.
Tree Wall Pose
To perform the tree wall pose,
- Stand near the wall and balance your body on a single foot.
- Bend your right knee and place your right foot on the side of your left thigh.
- Hold this position for a while and then repeat this for the other side.
To perform the Spinal Twist wall pose,
- Get into legs up the wall pose.
- Bend your knees and place them on your left with your feet touching the wall.
- Your body must be straight, and you must be looking at the front.
- Flex your arms and make a T-position with them in a straight line.
- Hold this position for a while and then repeat the same with the other side.
Perform wall yoga poses once or twice daily to relax your mind and body fully. You can do these as a 15-minute yoga routine. The good thing is that you can perform these anywhere as long as you have a wall.
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What Are The Benefits Of Legs Up Wall Yoga Pose?
Legs up wall yoga pose miraculously improves your health and overall well-being. Below are some of the top-notch benefits of this fantastic wall yoga pose.
The best benefit of legs up wall yoga pose is that it vigorously improves leg circulation and eliminates venous insufficiency (4). Sometimes, veins in the legs and feet cannot transport blood back up to the heart, which causes swelling. It may also happen due to prolonged sitting or standing. Doing legs up the wall yoga pose inverts the body and helps the veins circulate blood easily.
The purpose of restorative wall yoga poses is to destress your body and make you feel at ease. Many people may feel calm and stress-free after performing the legs up the wall pose (7).
Relieves Sciatic Pain
Sciatica imparts excessive pain in the buttocks, lower back, or hips. This may occur due to sciatic nerve damage. Doing inversion poses may relieve sciatic pain and other mild pains.
Stretches The Body
Inversion poses like legs up the wall, butterfly, or straddle wall yoga poses may stretch the body and improve flexibility (8).
Soothes Menstrual Cramps
Performing legs up the wall often works wonders for menstrual pain. Inversion poses like this one support the pelvic floor, which relaxes the pelvic muscles, mild backaches, and menstrual cramps (9).
Wall Yoga poses may also prove effective for migraine as blood flow improves in the inverted pose. Performing legs up the wall pose is particularly beneficial for people with migraines or severe headaches (10).
When doing the legs up wall yoga pose, your body is resting. This triggers the body’s natural response to digest food, cope with digestive issues, and improve digestion.
If you have insomnia or poor sleep, doing the legs up the wall pose may greatly help you. The reason is that your body is in a supine position. Also, you are doing slow breathing, which makes the body believe you are resting. This, in turn, calms your heart, lowers the heart rate, and helps you fall asleep instantly. You can also make this a routine before bed to improve sleep quality.
Relieves Lower Back Pain
During the legs up the wall pose, your torso remains supine. Meanwhile, the back is resting comfortably on the cushion or blanket. The entire tension in your back is released, which may reduce the lower back pain (11).
All of these perks reveal the essence of the legs-up-the-wall pose. On the surface, it looks simple, but it offers all the health benefits mentioned above within a few minutes. Including this in your yoga routines may gradually improve your physical and mental health.
The Bottom Line
Wall Yoga poses help beginners start their yoga journey from the comfort of their homes. With a wall and a yoga mat, individuals can unwind, improve their circulation, flexibility, and maintain strong mind-body coordination.
It is vital to consult your physician before starting any kind of yoga routine. If you suffer from any serious ailment, you must immediately seek medical consultation before beginning.
These wall yoga poses can be performed once or twice a day and can be inculcated in your overall yoga journey for better results.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- 5 Ways to Manage Stress During Life’s Hectic Moments (2021, webmd.com)
- The effects of selected asanas in Iyengar yoga on flexibility: pilot study (2021, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- 8 Pressure Points on Your Hands (2018, healthline.com)
- Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI) (n.d., clevelandclinic.org)
- How to Do Upward Facing Dog (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana) in Yoga (2020, verywellfit.com)
- Yoga for high blood pressure (n.d., artofliving.org)
- The Yoga Pose You Need: The Health Benefits of Legs Up the Wall (2021, health.clevelandclinic.org)
- Butterfly Pose: 6 Benefits of This Classic Hip Opener (2021, healthline.com)
- 4 Yoga Poses for Period Cramps (2022, healthline.com)
- Yoga For Migraines: 8 Poses That Can Help Relieve Your Pain (2020, mindbodygreen.com)
- Reducing Back Pain While Sleeping: Causes & the Right Sleep Positions for Treatment (n.d., amerisleep.com)