Hand Stands and Facing Fears

Sunday morning, I proudly announced to my husband that I’d tried my first hand stand.

β€œIt was scary and awesome!” I told him, still feeling a little of both myself.

I’ve been wanting to start learning more inversions and challenging poses for a while now. And I have to admit, I choose a hand stand to start with because of a poses I’m kind of obsessed with, Vrschikasana or scorpion pose.

Here’s what it looks like.

woman doing yoga in scorpion pose

Image source – tumblr.com

I know, amazing, right? And an incredible challenge.

I love the strength, beauty, grace and balance of the pose. It’s one of those things that I get excited about when I see someone in scorpion on the cover of a yoga magazine, an in ad – anywhere at all. I’m drawn to it and want to explore.

So, back to my morning attempts at hand stand.

I found a really good tutorial on YouTube and watched it once before playing it again and trying on my own. (By the way, how awesome is it that we have access to all these free videos and tutorials on YouTube? I’m always thankful for them.)

I’d actually been so excited about learning something new, I wasn’t feeling scared and didn’t think I would be. Then I actually got in to the pose.

I started off strong until I started my feet were up the wall. That’s when the fear hit.

It’s such a new, strange sensation. Being upside down, supported on my hands, trying to slowing walk my feet farther and farther up while looking down and breathing slowly.

I’m not sure what made that fear kick in but I stuck with it, got in to the L shape and stayed there, observing the new sensations and just telling myself to breathe.

But as the fear came, so did another feeling, Excitement – Euphoria! At one point, I wondered if I might want to laugh and scream at the same time. I was reminded of why I used to love the big, scary roller coasters when I was younger and also of how as I get older, I shy more and more away from them.

What am I so afraid of? I used to be so fearless and crave that kind of excitement!

Coming down and resting in child’s pose, my arms and shoulders let me know I had done something out of the ordinary, asking them to function in a new, different way but they weren’t too angry and I was still excited, even though I could still feel small crackles of fear.

Another and more important thing I was reminded of today is that:
it’s good to do things you are afraid of.

  • Nothing bad happened
  • I didn’t fall
  • I didn’t get hurt

And I was able to sit with feeling really weird and uncomfortable.

As I continue working on this pose, I can’t wait to see what else it has to teach me!

Here’s part 2 of the video.

I didn’t make it into a full hand stand, not even close but the morning still felt like a win.

What unexpected lessons has your practice brought you lately?

2 thoughts on “Hand Stands and Facing Fears

  1. amazing what our bodies can do when we put fear aside and face the challenge!
    I am a long way away from the scorpion pose, but I did try the poses using the wall and was actually able to get into the handstand position (with my feet resting on the wall). It was amazing! I have zero core strength thanks to a stomach separation, and I didn’t think I could support myself – I will confess it did hurt those damaged stomach muscles a bit – but nothing bad. The amazing thing was how great it felt for my back! what a great stretch! I felt all the tension leave my lower back. haven’t felt that in a long time.

    • Wow – that’s awesome you were able to do it! It’s great that it felt so good on your lower back as well – you’ve inspired me :) Yes – when we put fear aside or just walk through it instead of letting it stop us, it is amazing what we can do. Thanks so much for reading Rory!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>