Instructor: Sarah N.
Sarah has completed an intensive yoga teacher training program in Pune, India at the BKS Iyengar Yoga Institute. She has been inspired to continue practicing and teaching yoga for life.

Mountain Pose: Step-by-Step Instructions


Mountain Pose (Tadasana) is the foundation for every other standing pose in yoga. Mastering this pose teaches you how to stand properly in everyday life and helps improve every other posture that you do.

Step by Step Pose Information Benefits Variations Partnering

Tadasana

Mountain Pose is the foundation for every other standing pose in yoga. Mastering this pose teaches you how to stand properly in everyday life and helps improve every other posture that you do.

(Pronounced as "TAH-DAHS-anna")

Tada is the Sanskrit word for mountain. Just like a mountain reaches up from the earth to the heavens, remaining strong and unmovable, you should be able to keep your body firm and perfectly upright in this basic standing posture.

How to do Mountain Pose

Step One

Start by standing on your yoga mat with your feet together. Your big toes and heels should touch each other. Spread out the toes and stretch them flat against the floor. Shift your weight around without moving your feet until you feel that you are pressing the heels and the balls of your feet equally into the mat.

Step Two

Engage your thigh muscles, pulling the thighs up away from the kneecaps. Your thighs will turn in slightly toward each other. Do not sink down the arches of your feet. Rather, press down firmly through your big toes and try to lift up the muscles of your inner arch. When your arches feel strong, focus on straightening your posture and lengthening your back so that you form a straight line from your heels to the back of your head. Tuck your tailbone in to keep it in a straight line with the rest of your spine.

Step Three

Pull your lower abdomen in without over-tightening your stomach muscles. Lift your sternum and chest up and slightly forward. Tuck your shoulder blades firmly into your back to support this lift. When you have properly lifted the chest, then the neck will stay back and naturally lengthen up while staying in line with the rest of your spine.

Step Four

Double check that you are not putting too much weight over your toes or your heels now by leaning slightly forward and then backward until you feel your weight resting in the middle of your feet. Adjust your head so that the bottom of your chin is parallel to the floor. Relax the throat muscles and facial muscles. Look straight ahead. Let your arms extend down as they hang by your sides. Your palms should be in line with the middle of the sides of your thighs. Point your fingers downward.

Step Five

While every yoga posture begins with standing in Tadasana, it is also a good habit to perform Tadasana on its own when you start your daily practice. Hold the posture for 30 seconds to a minute while breathing normally.

Beginner's Tip:

To help you balance better, you can put your feet about 3 inches apart and turn the toes inward slightly so that the outside edges of your feet are parallel to each other.

Pose Information

Sanskrit Name:

Tadasana

Pose Level:

Level 1

Contraindications and Cautions:

  • For severe back conditions like scoliosis or health problems like Parkinson's disease that make it difficult to maintain steadiness while standing: Perform this pose in the corner of two walls. Face the center of the room and rest your arms against the adjoining walls to help support you in a straight position.

Modifications and Props:

You can improve your posture by practicing Tadasana with your back against a flat wall. The backs of your heels, your buttocks, shoulder blades and the outside edges of your shoulders should stay in contact with the wall. The back of your head should be within an inch or so from the wall.

Deepen the Pose:

After you assume Tadasana, close your eyes. Feel the balance over the center of your feet and all the way up your spine without relying on what you see in your external environment.

Benefits:

  • Improves your everyday posture
  • Builds strength in your thighs, abdomen, knees and ankles
  • Helps to correct flat feet

Variations:

To get a deeper stretch in Tadasana, try this new arm position. You can stretch your arms straight up above your head and interlace the fingers. Then turn your hands and push your palms up to face the ceiling. This elongates your spine further and expands your chest and shoulders more.

Partnering:

While you stand in Tadasana, ask a partner to check your alignment. They should look at you from the side. The middle of your neck, the center of your shoulder, your lower back, knees and heels should all be in one straight line.

Next Pose:

Peacock Pose

9 styles | 152 poses

Beginner Yoga Poses

Bharadvaja's Twist Pose
Big Toe Pose
Boat Pose
Bound Angle Pose
Bow Pose
Bridge Pose
Camel Pose
Cat Pose
Chair Pose
Child's Pose
Cobra Pose
Corpse Pose
Cow Pose
Cow Face Pose
Crow Pose
Dolphin Plank Pose
Downward Dog Pose
Eagle Pose
Eight Angle Pose
Extended Hand to Big Toe Pose
Extended Puppy Pose
Extended Side Angle Pose
Firefly Pose
Fish Pose
Garland Pose
Half Frog Pose
Half Lord of the Fishes Pose
Half Moon Pose
Yoga Handstand
Happy Baby Pose
Head To Knee Pose
High Lunge Pose
Legs Up The Wall Pose
Locust Pose
Lotus Pose
Shoulder Pressing Pose
Low Lunge Pose
Monkey Pose
Mountain Pose
Noose Pose
Plank Pose
Plow Pose
Sage Koundinya I Pose
Sage Marichi's Pose
Reclining Bound Angle Pose
Reclining Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose
Revolved Triangle Pose
Revolved Head to Knee Pose
Reclining Hero Pose
Scale Pose
Side Reclining Leg Lift Pose
Peacock Pose
Pyramid Pose
Crescent Lunge Pose
Heron Pose
Hero Pose
Feathered Peacock Pose
Staff Pose
Seated Forward Bend Pose
Four Limbed Staff Pose
Revolved Side Angle Pose
Wild Thing Pose
Side Crow Pose
Side Plank Pose
Sphinx Pose
Supported Headstand (Sirsasana)
Tree Pose
Standing Split
Supported Shoulderstand
Standing Half Forward Bend
Triangle Pose
Upward Plank Pose
Upward Facing Two Foot Staff Pose
Wheel Pose
Upward Salute Pose
Upward Facing Dog Pose
Warrior I Pose
Warrior II Pose
Warrior III Pose
Wide-Angle Seated Forward Bend
Easy Pose
Gate Pose
Wide Legged Forward Fold
Dancer Pose
One-Legged King Pigeon Pose
One-Legged King Pigeon Pose II
Marichi's Pose
Fire Log Pose
Standing Forward Bend
Pose Dedicated to the Sage Koundinya II

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