Camel Pose – Ustrasana

 

Camel Pose Stretches the entire front of the body

Key Benefits

  • Opens the chest and shoulders
  • Stimulates the nervous system
  • Stretches and strengthens the spine
  • Lengthens the entire front of the body
  • Relieves nervous tension

Instructions

Kneel on the floor with your knees aligned under your hips and your thighs perpendicular to the floor. Your spine is neutral and your head is lifting.

Inhale; lift your spine and slowly lower your hands back to hold your heels.

Exhale; maintain length in your neck as you lower your head back. Keep your hips working forwards and your spine lengthening upwards at all times. Press down strongly into your feet, shins and hands to create more lift in the pose.

Hold for 5-10 breaths.

To come out of the pose: inhale; lengthen. Exhale; squeeze your buttocks and activate your core as you carefully lift back up to the starting position, with your head coming up last. Lower your hips to your heels and fold forward into Child’s Pose. Rest for 5-10 breaths.

Modifications & Variations 

To build up stamina in this asana, you can hold the pose for 2-3 breaths, return to the start position, then come into the pose again and hold for another short interval. Repeat this several times. Over time, increase the length of time in the pose, and decrease the number of intervals.

Place a folded blanket under your knees if you find it uncomfortable on your knee joints.

If you cant reach your heels, place an upright yoga block alongside each foot to place your hands on instead. Or, you can try tucking your toes under so that your heels are elevated, making it easier to reach them.

If you aren’t ready to arch all the way back, you can place your hands on your lower back and only stretch back as far as you feel comfortable.

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