Sirshasana (Headstand Pose) – Benefits – Part 2

The regular practice of sirshasana also acts directly on the thyroid gland in the same way as sarvangasana5, helping to balance the metabolic functions and bring about wakefulness and alertness, but without excessive nervousness. Malfunctioning of the thyroid gland can result in many ailments either directly or indirectly. Sirshasana helps to bring perfect health to this vital gland.

Sirshasana helps to improve the operation of the sensory organs. That is, it can help to improve eyesight, hearing and the senses of smell and taste. The eyes require a large supply of oxygen in order to work perfectly. The extra supply of blood during sirshasana helps to bring this about. Besides making the sensory organs more healthy, sirshasana also directly influences the brain centres that interpret and control the sense organs. Various types of ailments such as myopia, astigmatism, catarrh and general bad hearing have been found to improve by regular practise of sirshasana.

The condition of the skin of the face can also be improved through regular practise of sirshasana. Pimples and wrinkles are often caused by inadequate removal of waste materials and insufficient nourishment from the blood. Sirshasana directs an oxygen rich flow of blood to the facial skin thereby improving the complexion.

There are a number of people who claim to have transformed grey hair into its original colour through the practice of sirshasana. There are also people who now have a good growth of hair through the same practice, having been partially bald before. This is not really surprising since greying of hair and balding are often due to bad blood circulation in the scalp. Sirshasana does not only direct enriched blood to the brain, it also sends it to the scalp. However to gain this kind of spectacular result sirshasana must be practised for a long period every day, longer than we would recommend for the average person. If you wish to do sirshasana for this purpose then we suggest you seek expert guidance.

While the upper part of the body receives an extra supply of blood, the lower parts are drained of blood. This has beneficial repercussions, since there is a tendency for blood to stagnate in the legs, in the pelvic and abdominal organs. This drainage removes impure stagnant blood so that it can be replaced with pure, oxygenated blood after terminating sirshasana. Two very common ailments are varicose veins and piles (haemorrhoids) caused by accumulation of blood in the legs and anus respectively. This places great pressure on the blood vessels and in time causes them injury. Regular practise of sirshasana relieves pressure on the vessels for a short time and is a great help in alleviating either of these ailments.

Sirshasana revitalizes the pelvic and abdominal organs, improving their associated functions: digestion, elimination, etc., and can help to remove related ailments. The drainage of blood from these organs is also increased by the deep breathing and thereby the massage from the diaphragm acting upwards against the weight of the organs. This action actually squeezes out the blood.

During inhalation the diaphragm has to move upwards against the weight of the abdominal organs, strengthening the diaphragm since it has greater resistance than normal. Furthermore, this increases the air pressure in the lungs slightly and thereby opens up and uncrumples the alveoli (air cells), improving the oxygen-carbon dioxide exchange within the lungs, which means that the body receives more oxygen and removes more unwanted carbon dioxide. This supplements the health benefits obtained from the improved blood circulation to the brain.

Sirshasana gives many more benefits. Also with many ailments, the influence is more subtle or indirect; as such it is difficult to attribute the effect directly to sirshasana. Practice improves the sense of balance and helps to relieve neurasthenia (caused by malfunctioning of certain nervous centres in the brain). Memory power, intellect, concentration, etc. are all mental functions, yet it is through the brain that they are expressed.

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