What is Halasana (Plow Pose) and its Benefits? Halasana or plow pose is a cultural asana for forward bending the spine that stretches, strengthens, and relaxes the body. Halasana is an intermediate pose that can be modified to fit your needs. Halasana improves both intellectual as well as memory power by increasing blood flow to your head. Besides having an overall good effect on the spine and other parts of the body, Halasana increases alertness in the mind. No other asana is as effective for spinal health as Halasana. Halasana improves the functioning of the thyroid, parathyroid, and pituitary glands also.
What is Halasana (Plow Pose)
Halasana has derived from Sanskrit two words Hal + asana, which means:
- Hal = plow
- Asana = posture or pose
Halasana is pronounce as hah-LAHS-ahs-nah
Halasana is named after a farming tool: Hal(plow), commonly used in Indian agriculture to prepare the soil for sowing crops. It prepares the physical and mental fields for deep renewal like its namesake. Generally, the plow is considered to be a calming and relaxing pose. This pose is great for stretching out a weary back after a sleepless night. It’s also a good preventative pose. The benefits of the plow pose or Halasana are long and extensive. Here are some of the reasons why this pose is so good for you.
Benefits of Halasana (Plow Pose)
The benefits of this Asana are similar to those of plowing a field. This is an advanced technique and should only be attempted after obtaining good spinal flexibility.
- Relief Stress
- Relief Back Pain
- Better Sleep
- Healthy Digestion
- Strengthen Muscles
- Increase flexibility
- Weight Loss
- Massage organs
- Manage Diabetes
- Improves Blood Circulation
- Correct Posture
- Strengthens Immune System
- Healthy Hair
- Helps Menopause
· Relief Stress
Halasana is a proven remedy that can alleviate anxiety and stress-related problems. When performed with breathing exercises, it helps to calm the mind.
· Relief Back Pain
Halasana relieves backaches by providing a proper massage to the back muscles. It releases the tension in the muscles and improves the strength of the spinal cord, thus relieving back pain. It also enhances the flexibility of the back muscles.
· Better Sleep
Halasana is perfect for calming the mind and relieving you from your mental hamster wheel. If you have sleep problems, particularly serious insomnia, make Halasana part of your regular bedtime ritual.
· Healthy Digestion
The Halasana assists in the treatment of various stomach disorders. The Halasana stimulates digestion by gently massaging the colon. It results in proper digestion and absorption of food ingested.
· Strengthen Muscles
Halasana works on almost all of your body’s muscles, starting from the tip of your toes to the top of your head and strengthening them.
· Increase flexibility
In Halasana, stretching the spine, neck, shoulders, legs, and hips will improve the flexibility of the muscles in the back, neck, shoulders, legs, and hips.
· Weight Loss
Practicing Halasana regularly helps shed extra weight around the thighs, abdomen, hips, and neck.
· Massage organs
Halasana enhances the function of the thyroid gland, parathyroid gland, pituitary gland, endocrine gland, as well as spleen, pancreas, liver, and kidneys by massaging them.
· Manage Diabetes
Halasana is an effective way to control diabetes. It stimulates the system to limit excess blood sugar production. It maintains the existing blood sugar level and keeps diabetes at bay.
· Improves Blood Circulation
The plow pose involves the reverse circulation of blood, i.e., diverting blood from the lower extremities to the upper extremities. This asana helps blood to reach the tips of all glands and nerves, thus enhancing blood circulation.
· Correct Posture
Halasana stretches all body muscles and improves the flexibility of each muscle helping to correct the posture.
· Strengthens Immune System
Halasana strengthens the immune system by strengthening the system and improving the flexibility of each of its muscles as the blood is circulated to every nerve ending.
· Healthy Hair
When you practice Halasana, you lie down in a position that redirects the flow of blood. It helps the blood reach the tips and roots of your hair. Regular practice will create the circulation necessary to grow healthy hair.
· Helps Menopause
Halasana is beneficial during menopause by relieving stress from major points. It is known for easing symptoms of stomach disorders and for massaging the neck, shoulder, and spine accordingly.
How to Do Halasana (Plow Pose)
To perform Halasana or plow pose we should aware of some beginner tips and preparatory poses to avoid injury. Then we will proceed to the Step-by-step procedure, follow-up poses, precautions, and contradictions of Halasana. So, start with beginners tips:
Beginners Tips for Halasana (Plow Pose)
Some of the Beginner’s tips for Halasana you should know before we move to the step-by-step procedure of it are as follows:
- Be slow and gentle.
- Support your back on the tops of your shoulders, lifting your shoulders a little towards your ears.
- Don’t jerk your body, while bringing the legs down.
- Try placing a pillow under your hips if you find it challenging to lift them off the ground.
- Protect your cervical spine by keeping a space between the back of your neck and the floor.
Preparatory Poses for Halasana (Plow Pose)
Some of the preparatory pose for Halasana or plow pose that help you to avoid injuries and prepare your body for the plow pose are as follows:
- Paschimottanasana – Seated Forward Bend
- Marjaryasana – Cat Pose
- Bitilasana – Cow Pose
Steps for Halasana (Plow Pose)
The correct step-by-step procedure for Halsana or plow pose is important to gain all its benefits and avoid injuries. Follow the following steps that are as follows:
- Lie down on a yoga mat with your back.
- Your arms beside you and palms should face down.
- Inhale: Slowly raise your legs together upward up to a 90-degree.
- Now, you lift your hips off the floor, you can support your body with your hands.
- Then, continue taking legs back beyond the head, in a semicircular arc, to touch the floor. This is Halasana.
- Hold Halasana as long as you can breathe slowly and keep looking forward.
- Then, come back slowly with exhaling.
Duration: Beginners hold Halasana for up to 10-40 seconds as per your capacity, start with 10 seconds then gradually increase it. And non-beginners can hold Halasana for up to 1-3 minutes as per your capacity.
Follow-Up Poses of Halasana (Plow Pose)
Some of the follow-ups pose for Halasana or plow pose that will help you to come back and relax your body are as follows:
- Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend)
- Marjaryasana (Cat Pose)
- Bitilasana (Cow Pose)
Precautions and Contraindications for Halasana (Plow Pose)
Here are some of the precautions and contraindications for Halasana or plow pose you should keep in mind before performing Halasana are as follows:
- If you have a neck injury, avoid practicing Halasana.
- Halasana should be avoided if you are suffering from diarrhea and high blood pressure.
- In pregnancy, women should avoid practicing Halasana.
- The practice of Halasana should be avoided during the first two days of menstruation for women.
Advance Poses and Variations of Halasana (Plow Pose)
Here are some variations and advanced poses of Halasana or plow pose are as follows:
- Poorva Halasana: it is for beginners, in it just don’t raise your hips and all steps are the same as Halasana.
Variation 1: This is an advanced pose, just interlocked your fingers behind your back and lightly squeezed shoulder blades and all steps are the same as Halasana.
Variation 2: This pose is done when you master Variation 1, your arms slid over your head and hold onto the toes and all steps are the same as Halasana.
Is Halasana or Plow Pose difficult?
Halasana only appears to be a difficult asana, but once you learn how to lift your feet from the floor using your abdominal muscles, Halasana becomes easy.
Does Halasana or Plow Pose reduce belly fat?
Yes, Halasana reduces fat, especially in your belly area. A plow pose or Halasana is an inverted asana that helps you lose weight by applying pressure to your stomach and belly.
Is Halasana or Plow Pose good for weight loss?
Yes, Halasana is good for weight loss. Halasana improves leg flexibility and tones the legs, stimulates the thyroid gland, strengthens the immune system, and improves metabolism, so it is good for people trying to lose weight.
How long should you hold Halasana or Plow Pose?
To hold this pose for 10 seconds, you need to be extremely mindful, have great control over your breath, and keep steady for at least 15 seconds. Once you have developed strength and flexibility, you can also hold this pose for as long as 30 seconds.
Does Halasana or Plow Pose increase height?
Yes, Halasana can increase height. Halasana strengthens your spine, legs, neck, shoulders, abs, and back muscles. Therefore, Halasana is good for increasing height.