Viparita Karani

Viparita Karani (literally upside down is considered alternatively as an asana or mudra in haṭha yoga.

The name comes from the Sanskrit words viparita meaning “inverted” or “inverted”, and Karani meaning “to do” or “to do”.

Viparita Karani refers to any practice where one is upside down. This can include the asanas of the shoulder stand (sarvangasana), headstand (sirsasana), or handstand (adho mukha vrksasana). In the pratipika hatha yoga, as in most classical ha’ha yoga texts, viparita karani is listed as mudra (HYP III.7), meaning that its purpose is to direct energy or kundalini upward into the body. (HYP III.5) as opposed to the asanas that are used in the Hatha Yoga Pradipika to create stability (HYP I.19). In a popular expression of viparita karani asana in modern postural yoga, she resembles Salamba Sarvāngāsana (shoulder supported) but with flexion in the thoracic spine (rather than the cervical spine, elbows on the floor and the hands supporting the hips or The variations include contacting the soles of the feet, as in Baddha Konasana or letting the legs fall into an overlap.

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