Camel Pose Modifications
Ardha-Ushtrasana meaning half camel pose, is highly recommended pose for it stimulates most of the physical systems. Alongside, it strengthens the neck, back, pelvis and abdominal muscles and offers relaxation. You should suggest this pose to people who have regular back pain, rounded back and and drooping shoulders. People suffering from high blood pressure, heart disease and thyroid should not practice Addha Ushtrasana. This pose should be avoided by people who have severe back ailments like lumbago. Also, people who have Hernia or had recent abdominal surgery and those who had recent or chronic knee, shoulder, neck or back injury or inflammation should also
How to do Ardha-Ushtrasana:
1. Sit in Hero pose.
2. Keep the knees apart, leaving hip width between them.
3. Stand on your knees.
4. Place your both palms on the sacrum with fingers pointed down, inhale and lengthen the spine at the same time pressing the knees down.
5. Exhale and press the hips forward with your palms and bend backwards Make sure your arms support your weight.
6. Now, reach your right hand down to the right heel. Make sure you can maintain the balance, if not possible or you can’t reach the heels, keep the hand on your sacrum.
7. Inhale. Straighten your left hand up and slowly move it backwards. Once you feel it is safe, drop the head all the way back with support of your left hand. This can also be done by keeping both hands on the heels.
8. Take 3-6 breaths each time holding the breath for up to 30 seconds.
9. Slowly, bring your both hands back to the sacrum, inhale up and let the head and back come vertical still standing on your knees. Release hips, waist and chest muscles and sit back on your heels.
10. Finally, join the knees. You are now sitting in the hero pose, your original position. Repeat on other side. Repeat this for 3-4 times.
1. If you feel pressure on knees and ankles, you can place a folded blanket under them.
2. If your hands cannot reach the heels, tuck the toes under or use a yoga block.
Benefits of Ardha-Ustrasana
1. Stretches and widens chest, improves respiratory functions, people suffering from Asthma get benefited.
2. Stretches abdominal area, stimulates abdominal organs, improves digestive and endocrine system.
3. Increases blood circulation to the brain, improves concentration.
4. Loosens the vertebrae, stimulates spinal nerves, relieves backache, rounded neck and dropping shoulders.
5. Stretches the front of the neck, stimulates thyroid gland.