Ushtrasana or the Camel Yoga Pose is one of the backward bending Yoga asana for strengthening the back and spine. In sanskrit, Ushtra means a camel and Asana means a pose. It is a good posture for developing flexibility of the spine and neck.
How to do Ushtrasana (The Camel Pose)?
- Kneel down and sit on your heels. Keep the knees and heels slightly apart.
- Now raise yourself up on the knees.
- Stretch your hands backwards and slowly bend your head and back with chin raised. You can place your hands on the either side of the hips. Stabilize ourself in this mid-position.
- Now, continue the stretch till your hands reaches down and you can feel the heels of your feet. Rest your hands on the heels. Make sure your chest is expanded and the neck is flexed backwards with gaze towards the sky.
- Remain in this position for as much as you are comfortable. You may go from 30 seconds to 3 minutes depending on your comfort level.
- To release the position, inhale and come back to the kneeling position. During the return, beginners should be careful not loose your balance and fall.
- Once in the kneeling position, you can rest in Shashankasana or the Hare Pose for some time.
Benefits of Ushtrasana (The Camel Pose)
- This asana gives a good stretch to the back, chest, hips, groins and neck muscles and is helpful for back pains, stooping shoulders and also for correcting postural defects of the spine.
- It tones the digestive, excretory and reproductive organs.
- Ushtrasana improves the flexibility of the spine.
- It expands the chest and improves lung capacity.
Contraindications for Ushtrasana (The Camel Pose)
- Ushtrasana should be avoided by those who suffer from serious neck problems.
- Those suffering from vertigo should perform this asana with caution, without losing balance. Have a yoga trainer to assist you in such cases.