As mentioned, many times previously, “muscle memory is created, first, in the mind” then executed through the body. Today’s practice for tree pose begins by lying flat on the yoga mat with long extended legs and the eyes closed to visualize the execution of tree pose.
Rest quietly and let go of all tension as you deeply inhale and exhale. Slowly begin to lift one leg at a time from the floor with a flat foot. Press the lower back firmly on the floor by scooting the buttocks forward and releasing the curve in the lower spin. Stretch out each arm from the shoulder, keeping the legs firmly planted onto the mat. Slowly raise and lengthen the right leg up to the sky and hold it there. Focus on straightening the back of the knee to increase blood circulation in the lower abdomen. Raise each leg one at a time and hold the pose for several minutes, continuing to breathe as you tighten the core.
Repeat 5 times on each side.
Roll over and come back to a standing posture. Next, locate a space to stand against a solid wall and stretch out the yoga mat as you stand tall in the center. Press the palms of each hand into the wall, keeping them next to the hip. Begin to slowly raise one leg at a time with a flat foot. Raise the leg even with the waist. If this is difficult, each leg as high as possible, keeping it straight. Avoid shrugging the shoulders while standing tall against the wall. Relax and breathe.
The goal is to lengthen each leg, one at a time, then across the thigh of the other leg. Maintain your balance with palms resting flat against the wall. Switch legs and repeat the same cross-over on the other side. If you feel you can maintain your balance moving a few inches away from the wall, give it a try. You can still place a finger on the wall to assist with balance. While standing in this posture, turn sideways and begin to lengthen the outside arm up to the sky. If you feel secure and balanced, release the finger against the wall and raise both arms up, parallel to each other. It will take focus and time to achieve balance. You can do it!