Tolangulasana – Weighing Scale Pose, Right Method, Benefits

By Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay) & Dr Manasa, B.A.M.S

Tolangulasana, in this pose the practitioner assumes the shape of a weighing scale and hence the name. The name also explains that the pose bestows upon you a sense of balance while practicing it. This is an intermediate to advanced Yoga pose.

Tolangula = weighing scale
Asana = pose

Other names
Brahmacharyasana – Celibate Pose
Continence Pose
Read – Utthita Padmasana | Tulasana – Raised Lotus Pose, Method, Benefits

Preparation for Tolangulasana

  • The ‘Weighing Scale Pose’ should be done on empty stomach. It needs to be preferably practiced early in the morning.
  • It shall be done 3-4 hours after consuming the food especially when it is done at some other time other than morning time. This will ensure that the stomach be empty at the time of taking on to the pose while the consumed food will provide energy to do the pose with ease.
    Read – Yogasana – Spiritual, Physical And Mental Benefits, Classification

Method of doing

Positioning for the pose

Sit in Padmasana – lotus pose.

Getting into the pose

  • Place your hands beneath butts. Your right hand is placed beneath right sitting bone and the left hand beneath left sitting bone. Now you are sitting on hands. The hands are placed such that the thumbs are pointing outwards.
  • Now bend backwards slowly as you place elbows on the ground behind you. Simultaneously lift your knees off the floor. If flexibility allows, your arms should make a right angle with your forearms. Don’t push hard to get the angle right. Do as much as you can.
  • Push your navel inwards and engage your core.
  • Now your entire body weight is on your forearms and hands. Keep your spine straight. Your torso makes a ‘V’ shape with your thighs placed in lotus position.
  • Be here for few deep breaths.

Release from the pose

  • Swing up gradually to come up to the sitting position.
  • Remove your hands from beneath your sitting bones.
  • Bring your knees down to the floor while exhaling.
  • Release your legs from the lotus.
  • Extend your legs and come to staff pose or finish by coming back to lotus pose.
  • Breathe easily and relax.
  • Repeat the pose 2-5 times.

Variation 1

  • Sit in lotus pose.
  • Bend backwards and sleep on your back.
  • Bring your hands beneath your butts.
  • Now with the help and support of your forearms pressing on the floor, bend your elbows and raise your torso up in the air. Simultaneously raise your knees off the floor. Your body weight is now supported on your elbows and hands.
  • Be here for 4-5 deep breaths.
  • Release in the reverse way.

Variation 2

In the final pose, place your hands on your knees or thighs in either Chin Mudra or Gyan Mudra. Take care to be easy on your spine and do not progress to do this if you are not comfortable. Else you may harm your spine.

Variation 3

Combine either Mula Bandha or Jalandhara Bandha with the final pose.
Read – Maha Mudra – Meaning, Procedure, Benefits, Precautions

Modifications

If you are not comfortable doing this pose from lotus pose, you can do it in Sukhasana – Easy Pose.

You may place your hands beneath your butts with either palm down or by making fists.

Watch this video to follow the method of doing Tolangulasana
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rnyd4QO3dHI
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0M9SNLy6aVQ

Health Benefits

  • Strengthens muscles in the arms, shoulders and abdomen
  • Strengthens and opens the chest
  • It tones up abdominal organs and muscles and improves the functioning capacity of abdominal organs
  • Strengthens back and thigh muscles
  • This pose strengthens biceps, triceps and quadriceps muscles. Thus it can be included in Yoga sequences involving these muscles.
  • Provides you with a broad, fine chest
  • Expands spine
  • Makes arms and forearms stronger by increasing blood supply to them
  • Burns the tummy fat and help to maintain healthy weight
  • It helps you to maintain healthy body weight.
  • It balances the functions of digestive system and corrects the digestion process.
  • Removes flatulence
  • Improves functions of thyroid, thymus and adrenal glands
  • Activates the parasympathetic nervous system, helps to combat with or to keep away anxiety and stress
  • The breath retention in the pose provides a sense of calmness and relaxation
  • Improves the focus
  • Good remedy for constipation, digestive disorders, obesity, heart ailments, diabetes, insomnia and hypertension
  • Bestows other benefits of lotus pose

Preparatory Poses

Padmasana – Lotus Pose

Follow Up Poses

  • Shavasana – Corpse Pose
  • Makarasana – Crocodile Pose
  • Cobra Pose

Time spent doing Tolangulasana

The beginners shall hold in the pose for at least 30-60 seconds. Once the practitioner has mastered the pose, he or she shall spend 2-3 minutes in the pose.

Impact on Chakras

Activates Muladhara Chakra – root chakra, Swadisthana Chakra – sacral chakra, Manipura Chakra – Solar Plexus / Navel chakra and Vishuddha Chakra – throat chakra

Activates Kundalini energy when performed along with Mula or Jalandhara Bandha

Contraindications, Precautions

  • Spinal disorders
  • Knee ailments
  • Serious back injuries
  • Shoulder pain
  • Recent stomach surgery
  • Colitis
  • Neck pain
  • Stomach ulcers

Caution

Pregnant women may avoid this pose.

Impact on doshas and tissues

Impact on Doshas and its subtypes –Since the pose is good for digestive functions and is a good cure for digestive disorders, it balances the gut doshas i.e. samana vata, pachaka pitta and kledaka kapha. As it also soothes and calms your mind and also improves focus and is a good remedy for insomnia it balances the raja and tama qualities of the mind, hikes your sattva quality and also balances the doshas of the head i.e. tarpaka kapha, sadhaka pitta and prana vata. Since the pose is good for heart ailments and is a good pose for hypertension, it balances the chest doshas, i.e. avalambaka kapha, vyana vata, sadhaka pitta and ranjaka pitta. The pose is also an apana-vata balancer since it relieves you of your constipation.

Impact on tissues –This pose strengthens your muscles and hence beneficial for the health of your muscles and the channels of transportation of muscle tissue. Since it trims your weight by depleting excessive fat stores, it is good for the maintenance of body fat in a healthy way.

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