What is a Tree Pose ?

What better pose for December than the tree pose? Holiday trees adorn homes, store windows and street corners naturally giving a sense of serenity and inner peace. As the celebrations begin we are busied with gift shopping adventures, joyous social occasions and family gatherings. Yet we usually forget to provide quiet time for ourselves. One of my favorite poses is Vrksasana Tree Pose.

The benefits of Tree Pose are:
    Improved balance
    Proper posturing
    Developed concentration and focus
    Improved balance
    Increased strength in the arms, legs and feet

To Do Tree Pose:
Stand strong and tall like the trunk of a tree. Find a focal point in front of you at eye level. Keep your eyes fixed on this spot throughout the practice of this posture. Bring your palms together in front of the chest. Shift your weight to one leg without dropping your alignment. Bend the other leg and place foot on the calf, knee or thigh, whichever is appropriate for you to hold your balance. Allow your standing foot to root you into the ground. Extend your arms, like the tallest branches straight over your head so your elbows, shoulders and hips line up. Relax and breathe slow and deep. Feel the balance and inner peace of Vrksasana. If your balance is shaky, return to standing on both feet. * Remember, trees are strong yet flexible. Take a moment's rest before beginning the other leg. Be patient with this pose. In time everyone stands as beautiful and peaceful as the holiday evergreen. May you have peace and the warmth of loved ones with you this season.

*Those with blindness in one or both eyes will have greater difficulty with balancing postures as well as those with severe spinal misalignments. These can be overcome with assistance.

Lara Azzarito Ward or Lotus Gardens Yoga, visit

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