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Parsvaika Pada Sirsasana
(Headstand with One Leg to the Side)

How to perform Headstand with One Leg to the Side

Hold in Sirsasana. Maintaining your Tadasana line, lower one leg over to the side. Repeat on both sides.

What is Parsvaika Pada Sirsasana?

This is an asymmetrical variation of Salamba Sirsasana in which one leg is taken out to the side and lowered to capacity. The trick is to maintain the Tadasana line and avoid the body from shifting to the side as the leg is lowered. This makes this variation quite strenuous and advanced. It requires a significant amount of core strength, hamstring flexibility, and hip mobility.

When to do Parsvaika Pada Sirsasana?

There are several ways to prepare for Parsvaika Pada Sirsasana. The most obvious poses that can be done before you go into this inversion are Supta Padangusthasana 2 and Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana 2 (the supine and standing representations of the same pose).

A good time to do poses from the Sirsasana family is either the morning or the beginning of a more dynamic practice. This is because Sirsasana is a heating inversion, which means that it stimulates blood flow to the brain and thus increases energy and alertness levels. If you are doing Sirsasana or any of its variations later in the evening, make sure to follow up with cooling inversions, such as those from the Sarvangasana family, or with forward bends.

Just like all inversions, Parsvaika Pada Sirsasana requires the student to have a certain level of confidence and to lack any medical conditions that could be aggravated by it. For example, if you are suffering from irregular blood pressure or chronic dizziness, you should approach inversions with caution. It is recommended you consult with your physician before you attempt such poses.