Inversions are a unique feature of yoga. Here's how they help improve concentration
A yoga practice without inversions is like a marriage without a spouse, lemonade without lemons, or a body without a heart - the essence is missing. — Aadil Palkhivala
Yoga from a different perspective
Inversions are a unique feature of yoga. Yoga texts define the concept behind inversion poses as viparita karani, which means “opposite process”.
Indeed, inversions offer a different perspective; physically, the body is supported differently, enhancing focus and concentration.
Inversion yoga asanas place the feet above the head during the practice. This elicits as much fear as fascination. It is very important to be aware of body alignment and to adapt these poses gradually, under the guidance of a yoga teacher, according to one's physical ability and comfort level to reduce the risk of injury. These poses call for proper breathing, a heightened awareness and significant core and shoulder strength.
A word of caution
Inversions are not meant for those who are pregnant, menstruating, have pre-existing injuries especially neck injuries, high blood pressure, detached retina, epilepsy and heart conditions.
Benefits of Inversions
Yoga inversions are strengthening postures, which when performed correctly, offer special benefits.
They strengthen the muscular-skeletal system, the shoulders, back, abdomen and legs that work against gravity.
They stimulate circulation as everything moves in an opposite direction; blood pumped from the heart to the belly and legs is reversed.
Head stand and shoulder stands stimulate the glandular and hormonal systems resulting in better balance and increased vitality.