The Yoga Tutor

Brahma Danda: The Yogic Spine

[ Excerpt from The Science of Yoga, page 280 ]

In yoga, the spinal column is referred to as Brahma danda, which literally means "the walking stick of God." This should give us an indication of the importance that the ancients attributed to this region of the body.

Spinal health is of paramount importance in yoga. The spine is seen as a vehicle through which the power of the Universe may manifest in the human form. As well, it is through sushumna nadi, the central channel within the spinal column that the mysterious and powerful kundalini force raises from its dormant state at the base of the spine to the Brahmarandhra, or psychic aperture at the crown of the head.

It is the vertical nature of the human spine which aligns the mechanism of our central nervous system with the vertical energy flows of the Universe and gives superior intelligence to the human beings. Thus, in meditation it is of the utmost importance that one's spine be vertical and straight.

As we have touched upon in an earlier lesson, it was precisely to enable the yogi to sit comfortably with a tall and straight spine that the asanas were primarily concerned with.

Even so today, the recurring theme throughout much of our hatha yoga practice revolves around the health, strength and flexibility of the spine. One cannot have good health without a healthy spine.


NOTE: This yoga article is an excerpt from The Science of Yoga, an online yoga training program with streaming yoga videos and 600 pages of step-by-step yoga instruction.

"The Science of Yoga is a course worthy of

leather binding and an honored place in the
finest libraries in the world 
... It is indeed a masterful work."


Dr. John Michael Christian


Learn More About
The Science of Yoga Course

Yoga Affiliate Program
Free Yoga Lessons
Get Your Free Copy
Yoga in India
The Yoga Masters Course