In order to master standing postures, one’s mind must control the body, and the will must control the mind. Correctly mastering the standing postures enables you to discipline both mind and body in a positive way.
Because the standing postures are the most physically taxing of all of the yogic asanas, one must take charge of the body and train the body in the postures. It is important to stretch the body to its full limits in the standing postures without overstraining it. Feel the energy in your body move from the center outward.
The standing postures are very important because they form the basic foundation for the other main groups of asanas, so they need a great deal of practice and attention. Doing them correctly brings strength, flexibility and good body posture as well as developing strong muscles. They improve circulatory, respiratory, eliminative, muscular, reproductive, eliminative, endocrine and nervous systems of the body.
While doing the standing postures, you must carefully protect the neck the lumbar vertebrae and the knees:
• Keep the neck as passive as you can by lengthening the back of the neck.
• Try to lengthen and straighten the lumbar spinal region without overreaching them.
• The standing postures are wonderful for building strength in the muscles and ligaments surrounding the knee, but caution must be taken when bending the knee. Ensure it is over the center of the foot as you bend it, and avoid twisting it.
When doing the standing postures, find our center, which is the spine and the energy that moves along the spine. From your center, move outward, with the arms moving from between the shoulder blades and the legs moving from the pelvic area.
Movement in the standing postures is designed to be smooth, circular, and fluid rather than abrupt, sharp or jerky. While in the standing postures, make continual adjustments to improve the pose until you feel you have captured the essence of the pose. Then surrender to the pose and begin deep breathing.