Yoga for YOU: Tree Pose

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This month’s pose, Vrksasana (translation Tree Pose), builds stability, grace and balance. As with all postures, the more you practice a pose the more it comes with ease; the more intentionality you give to a pose, the more awareness you develop. Tree pose is designed for practitioners to reveal inner peace and express themselves uniquely as they breathe deeper into the pose.

The accompanying photo was taken after a weeklong teacher training intensive in the Catskills. I can recall the calm energy of this rock, as well as how stable and at peace I was in that moment. Now, when my balance is aligned, Tree Pose brings me into deep peace and tranquility. I can feel the ground beneath my standing leg and the energy that reaches up through my body and out the crown of my head. There is a sense of fulfillment in the posture that can only be enjoyed when experienced. So let’s experience it!

Stand with your feet parallel in Mountain Pose. Bring your palms together over your heart. Focus your eyes on a still point in front of you. Shift your weight into your right foot. Lift your left heel off your mat. Turn your left knee out to the left and rest your left heel just above you right anklebone. This is the first option for the pose and you can stay here. If you are ready to go deeper, bring the arch of your left foot to your right calve. If you would like to go even deeper bring the arch of your left foot into your inner right thigh. In each of these variations, your left knee will point out to the left in external rotation.

Hold this side of the pose and breathe. Feel the incredible support from the ground beneath you. Feel the length of your body. Feel the touch of your palms. Breathe. Repeat the Mantra “I am at peace” ten times. Release your left foot. Take a breath. Move to the other side. Namasté.

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Michelle Ploog has been a nationally recognized yoga teacher for over 13 years. She’s certified in Baptiste Yoga, Kripalu Yoga, Fluid Power Vinyasa and Restorative Yoga. She began practicing as a teenager and has since evolved into co-developing and facilitating Yoga Teacher Trainings in multiple locations. Her expertise in fitness as an ACE certified personal trainer, years as a sports-specific yoga teacher/ fitness trainer for the FL Everglades, and experience in wellness coaching influence her dynamic approach to yoga. She spends her time between Minneapolis and Naples throughout the year, and calling her partner Dan and their furbabies Dallas and Kitty her home.

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