Challenge Pose: Salamba Sirsasana II

Shift your perspective as you move step by step into Salamba Sirsasana II.
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Flip your perspective and get upside-down in Salamba Sirsasana II.

Flip your perspective and get upside-down in Salamba Sirsasana II.

PREVIOUS STEP IN YOGAPEDIA 3 Ways to Prep for Salamba Sirsasana II

Salamba Sirsasana II Sa = With · Alamba = Support · Sirsa = Head · Asana = Pose

Tripod Headstand Benefits 

Strengthens your arms and shoulders; improves digestion; gives you new perspective, and asks you to face your fears

Stay Safe

It’s essential to develop upper back, shoulder, and core strength prior to attempting this pose so you can protect your neck. If you feel discomfort in your neck at any point, come down immediately. You should never move through pain. Your cervical spine supports your head and connects it to your trunk. This portion of your spine has a lot of mobility and flexibility and is prone to injury. In extreme cases, compression of your nerve roots can damage your spinal cord, impair blood flow, or cause neurological dysfunction.

If your neck feels rigid, bring your feet down to the ground. Find stability again, and gently move more weight toward your forehead to see if that helps. If the placement of your head feels better, you may have a flatter cervical spine with less natural curve. By moving more toward your forehead, you distribute your weight slightly and may be able to take pressure off your neck. Again, if your breath begins to strain or your feel pain, it’s time to come down. Any time your head is below your heart, you are in an inversion, so stay in Prasarita Padottanasana for similar benefits. 

See also Feathered Peacock Pose

About our Pro 
Teacher and model Jenny Brill focuses on alignment-based hatha yoga, with an emphasis on humor. She’ll make you sweat up a storm and laugh out loud at the same time. A native of Los Angeles, she’s taught yoga for more than 25 years and is a regular contributor to several teacher-training programs. Her authenticity, energy, and mastery of fine-tuning alignment has created a strong community of devoted and fearless yogis.