Ushtrasana - Camel Pose

The camel pose stretches the abdominal area, lengthens the hip flexors, strengthens the back and opens the chest, creating space for heart and breath.

  • After resting in child's pose for a while - directing the awareness to your breath - come to a kneeling position with the knees hip-width apart. Curl the toes under and lift your heels. Place your hands on your lower back and move both elbows and shoulder blades towards each other. Push your pelvis and chest slightly forward so your thighs are perpendicular to the floor.
  • Reach your right hand behind you toward your right heel. With your next inhalation, stretch your left arm upward. Maintain length in your neck and your back as you slightly lift your chin and gaze upward. Come back to centre and repeat the same movement on the other side.
  • Come back to centre, reach your right hand behind you toward your right heel. Carefully reach your left hand to your left heel, open your chest, maintain length in your neck and focus on your breath.
  • To exit the position, inhale deeply, slowly bring the torso upright, move your hips backwards to your heels and your upper body down into child's pose - balasana - again. Rest for a while and be aware of your body and your breath.

(People with neck or back problems, or high blood pressure should practice modifications. Get your doctor's approval for your Yoga practice, if your are not sure about your overall level of health.)

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