Cobra Pose, Bhujangasana, Nagasana

(January 23, 2009)

what is cobra pose


The Cobra pose is also referred to as the Bhujangasana or Nagasana in Sanskrit. Nagasana means posing like a snake and it translates to Naga meaning the snake and asana meaning the pose. Bhujanga also means the snake and the word bhuj in it means a curve or to bend. So it Bhujangasana means to curve or bend like a snake. Hence in English it is called as the cobra pose. It is done in the following manner:

Place a yoga mat on the floor and lie on your stomach facing the floor. You can rest your head on your arms. Then breathe in and breathe out slowly through your nostrils and not your mouth. Then raise your head while breathing in slowly and slid your hands next to your body so that your palm are next to your shoulders. Press them firmly on the ground and raise your head and chin up. Very slowly let your weight shift from your chest to your stomach while you raise yourself up. Keep raising your body up till your hands are straight and your body is curved backwards. Your arms will provide the support while doing this. Do this in a very slow and relaxed manner concentrating on your breathing. You do not need to force yourself up but raise your body slowly while focusing on your breathing. Then very slowly in the same manner come back to your original position, lying down on your stomach. The whole process needs to be done in a slow smooth manner, avoid doing it fast and in a jerky manner as that might put unnecessary strain on your body. This greatly increases the flexibility of your spine and lower back and is very beneficial for people suffering from problems in the lower back. It is great for women who have problems with their menstrual cycles or pain related to it. It also helps to build your chest by stretching the muscles and makes your shoulders, arms and wrists strong. It also helps to strengthen the muscles in your belly and the pelvic region along with your back as it stretches and tones them during this asana or pose.

Bhujangasana or the cobra pose is also great for people suffering from spinal problems as it greatly strengthens the spine. But you need to check with your doctor first before doing this asana or pose as it is not recommended if your back is injured.

Submitted by G M on January 23, 2009 at 12:35

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