Camel Pose- Ustrasana

What’s that big back bend pose that makes you feel dizzy, nauseous and emotional, sometimes all at once?

Oh yes…it’s camel -Ustrasana

Camel pose is a peak pose in many sequences, building up to a place of release, surrender and bliss. Most teachers focus on the heart opening-4th chakra benefits of camel even though it is a pose that opens up every energy center in the body.

Camel is a great pose that stretches the front of the body especially the chest and abdomen, quadriceps and the hip flexors. It strengthens the back muscles, improves your posture and increases spinal flexibility. Helps with digestion by stimulating the Kidney and increasing lung capacity and any respiratory problems alleviated by creating space in the chest and lungs.

How to Camel:

Camel is energizing and helps to reduce fatigue, stress and anxiety. Practicing Camel may bring up some stuck emotions in the throat and heart center, trapped there because of poor posture and slouching during the day.

This pose helps with increased creativity and the relief of anxiety and stress.

Start by kneeling upright with your knees hip width apart. Press your shins and tops of your feet into the mat. Now inhale, press the knees down and stretch your head up, lengthening your spine.

Exhale and press the hips forward squeezing your buttocks and thighs and supporting your weight with your hands as you press backwards. Rest your hands on the back of your pelvis fingers pointing towards the floor and then lean back with your chin slightly tucked down towards your chest. If you are a beginner keep your hands on your hips like you are putting them in your jeans pockets.

If that feels easy, reach back and hold onto your heels one hand at a time and hold tightly whilst actively lifting your chest toward the ceiling. Keep your head neutral or let it drop back if you feel safe. Hold the pose for 30 to 60 seconds or 3 to 6 breaths.

To come out of camel go the opposite way you came in, bring your hands back to hips for suppport, then lift your body by pushing your hips towards the floor, head coming up last.

Rest in Savasana (corpse pose)

Open your heart today in Camel!