Vasisthasana – The Side Plank Pose

Vasisthasana or the side plank pose strengthen the arms, wrists and legs and improves the sense of balance. In Sanskrit, Vasistha is name of an ancient sage meaning best, excellent or richest and Asana means a pose. Vasisthasana is an intermediate level pose. To do this pose, you need good strength of the wrist and arms.

Vasisthasana - Side Plank Pose

How to do Vasisthasana (Side Plank Pose)?

  1. Start in Adho Mukha Svanasana or the downward facing dog pose. In this starting position, the body weight is supported by the two legs and the two hands on the floor, while the body is bend at the hips like a “V”, with the buttocks upwards and face turned downwards.
  2. From here slowly being the right leg closer to the left leg and stack it against the left leg. Place the right foot on top of the left foot.
  3. Raise your right hand and turn your body sideways. Take the right hand all the way up with the right palm facing towards the ceiling.
  4. The right foot should be on top of the left foot. The weight is resting on the left foot alone, alone with the left hand.
  5. Turn your gaze towards the left palm that is facing upwards.
  6. Hold steady in this position for as long as you are comfortable. In the beginning stages, you may bend the left leg slightly at the knees and get more surface area on the floor to gain the balance. Later, once you gain the strength and balance, you can attempt the original pose.
  7. To release the pose, come back to the downward facing dog pose and stay there for few seconds.
  8. Vasisthasana can be repeated on the right side also.

There are variations of Vasisthasana. One of them is with the right leg raised above the ground. In the second variation, you may try to hold the right leg using the right hand, while your body weight is supported by your left leg and left arm.


Benefits of Vasisthasana (Side Plank Pose)

  1. Vasisthasana strengthens the arms, wrist and shoulder muscles.
  2. It gives a good sense of balance.
  3. Vasisthasana strengthen the core muscles in the abdomen.
  4. It stretches the back of the legs.
  5. This pose gives a good stretch to the muscles of the inner thighs, groins and hamstrings.


Contraindications for Vasisthasana (Side Plank Pose)

  1. Avoid this pose if you have any serious injury of wrist, elbow, arms or shoulders.
  2. Vasisthasana should not be done by anyone who had any recent surgery of the abdomen, arms or legs.