A Study in Tadasana

In our Skills in Asana class with Theresa this morning, we worked on Handstand, and the preparation for Handstand is Tadasana, so we spent some time working on that.

I will add that the regular students in this class are yoga teachers, and you will probably think, “What are yoga teachers doing practicing Tadasana? What’s there to practice? You just stand there!”

Just Stand There

Well, yes, it’s true. You do just stand there, but *how*? To stand with our bones stacked on each other, the shoulders over the hip joints over the knees over the ankles, to stand with the sacrum, lumbar, thoracic, and cervical not too in or out of their natural curves, to stand without hunching over or puffing out too much, whooo, *that* is not immediately easy.

Our bodies are so used to certain long-established patterns that they feel completely natural to us: the pattern of slouching, the pattern of flattening our lumbar to hide our derrieres,  the pattern of holding our breaths, etc. So now, even when we are taught to stand correctly, it all feels very awkward and unnatural, and change does not come easy.

Standing isn’t Still

Another interesting thing about Tadasana, or standing in mountain pose, is that we are *not* standing still. I remember getting my picture taken once and kept being told “stand still!” No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t do it! I blamed the fact that I have one leg that’s longer than the other, but now I know better.

There is always a constant tiny sway, a little of back and forth and side to side. Within stillness, there’s motion, and within motion, there’s stillness.