Talasana (Palm Tree) Sequence, also referred to as Tadasana (Mountain Pose) is the foundational krama of vinyasa krama yoga.
Starting in Tadasana-Samasthiti and maintaining the steadiness and focus of mind and steadiness of body with the feet together throughout the practice, initiates balance and stability by grounding and moving from our center.
Practiced with the two feet together all the major joints and muscles of the body are exercised using arm and hand movements, back bends, side bends, twists, forward bends, squats and balancing foot stretches. The position of the head remains chin to chest for most of the practice which stretches the spine - especially thoracic, aids the ujjayi breathing and helps with balance. The muscles of the lungs, rib cage, neck, throat & nasal passages all work together in this systematic set of movements. The front of the legs remain relaxed. A dristhi or focused gaze is maintained throughout the practice.
The principal element of this practice is the coordination of the mindful (conscious, deliberate) ujjayi breath (throated, long, smooth, with ease) with precisely synchronized slow, graceful movements (relaxed, yet alert) in a predetermined intelligent order that progressively open us up physically and energetically. The controlled breath remains unbroken at a uniform rate with a pause after each inhale and exhale to maintain the correct ujjayi.
The fingers interlaced create a prana circuit as they come together in the repetitive movement over the head. The breath specific movements stretch the diaphram, psoas, massage the heart and internal organs, clear the lungs, drain the lymphatic system, stimulate the vagus nerve and calm the mind. Energy is created along the spine and central nervous system, and is distributed throughout the nadis and into the entire energy body.
There are many nuances and degrees of difficulty in this practice including focus, yogic state of mind, arm/hand placement, breath count, inner listening and lengthy repetition that all add to the overall energetics of the practice. It accommodates beginners as well as advanced practitioners.
As the practices in the vinyasa krama system build upon one another it is essential to learn and memorize Talasana before embarking on other kramas. Talasana teaches us how to approach the system and establishes our balance and inward focus in the root posture, samasthiti - "It's grounding, it's rooting, it's balancing. It works on focusing the mind. It teaches the student how to move with the breath. It teaches the student how to slow down. What it mostly does is start to grow the energy (pranic force) in the body to prepare them for the practice to come......" Pam Johnson, Vinyasa Krama lineage holder
Practicing on a daily basis help us maintain a healthy body and peaceful mind. The attitude is devotional and serene. A quiet practice moving to the mantra of our breath creating a meditative state while the prana carries us into graceful swanlike movements. Diving deep into Talasana with persistent practice we develop "ananta samapatti" - (engrossment in the object of contemplation (infinitude) - here translating as the breath) with subtle awareness in the heart center where the movements are memorized and become second nature.
▪ Directs prāna into the cartilage tissue, spinal discs, sinuous musculature of the body, internal organs, nādis and nerve pathways
▪ Teaches us how to master the "Pause" & Stillness within movement
▪ Initiates balance and stability by moving from our center
▪ Exercises the spine, all major muscles and joints, and muscles of respiration
▪ Massages the heart and internal organs
▪ Flushes the lymphatic systems
▪ Stimulates Immunity
▪ Clears the Lungs & Strengthen the respiratory system
▪ Aligns the nadic system (energetic pathways)
▪ Stimulates the vagus nerve
▪ Improves circulation
▪ Calms the mind and nervous system
▪ Trains the mind and body for stillness