Exploring Ustrasana Variations for Enhanced Flexibility
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Exploring Ustrasana Variations for Enhanced Flexibility

Yoga is a symbol of modern living. It was Swami Vivekananda who spread Eastern Hindu philosophy to the West during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Yoga practice relies on sustained bodily postures and regulated breathing techniques. Today, the world is more concerned about their well-being than ever before. Thus, asanas are popular for maintaining overall health. Yoga asanas boost glandular activity and balance the hormone profile. 

As a hath yoga asana, Ustrasana helps rejuvenate your body and reverse the damage caused by sedentary lifestyles. Here’s what you need to know!  

 

Ustrasana: what is it? 

The meaning of the word ‘Ustra’ is Camel, and ‘asana’ is posture or seat. Hence, Ustrasana is also called the camel pose.  

Camel Pose, or Ustrasana, is an energizing backbend that opens the chest. This exercise prevents slouching and eases lower back stiffness. 

Unlike Chakrasana (wheel pose), Camel Pose Yoga allows spine extension without using your arms. This is one of the more demanding backbend poses because it requires more stamina and determination. Especially for beginners, the camel pose is more accessible and friendly. 

It’s best to keep a pillow under the knees since the Ustrasana pose can cause discomfort. Breathing deeply and slowly is essential while approaching the backbend. 

 

How To Do Ustrasana Step By Step

We need to follow proper techniques to get the most out of the camel pose. It’s important to keep breathing and avoid straining or loading the lower back, that is the lumbar region. Performing Bhujangasana (Cobra pose), Salabhasana (Locust pose), Anjaneyasana (Low lunges), Setu Bhandha Sarvangasana (Bridge pose), Urdhva Mukha Shvansana (upward-facing dog pose) can prepare you for Ustrasana.

Camel pose or Ustrasana steps:

  • Make sure your thighs are parallel to the ground and your upper body is vertical.
  • You can put cushions or pads below your knees if they’re sensitive.
  • Using your hands, push up the rib cage by placing your thumb on the back and your four fingers around the side.
  • Toes should be pressed gently on the floor, feet backward.
  • Taking a deep breath, extend your body backward.
  • Take your right hand back and hold the heel or block.
  • Then repeat with your left hand.
  • Raise your chest and curl your shoulders backward.
  • If you can, extend your neck as far as you can.
  • Take deep, slow breaths.
  • Hold the pose for a few breaths before you exit.

 

Avoid crunching your lower back and squeezing your buttocks. Knees should only be opened to hip width. Performing Ustrasana, or camel pose, requires yoga training.

 

Ustrasana variations Or Camel Pose Variations

  • KNEELING CAMEL POSE

  • HALF-REVOLVED CAMEL POSE (ARDHA PARIVRTTA USTRASANA)

HALF-REVOLVED CAMEL POSE

  • STRAPPED CAMEL POSE

  • LUNGING CAMEL POSE (ANJANEYASANA USTRASANA)

  • MERMAID CAMEL POSE

 

Benefits of Ustrasana 

Ustrasana has several benefits. Some of them are mentioned below. 

Ustrasana Improves posture 

Almost everyone spends most of their days sitting or slouching. The Ustrasana stretches the frontal regions of the body, especially the chest, belly, and quadriceps, which may improve body posture and help to prevent joint pain. Camel pose increases spinal mobility by flexing the back in the opposite direction. 

 

Ustrasana Increases oxygen flow 

Ustrasana increased oxygen consumption from 14.18% to 293%, or approximately 86.6 %. Carbon dioxide output also increased. According to these studies, Ustrasana or camel pose can help expand the lungs. Expanded lungs can help increase oxygen levels. As a result, the body gets more oxygen. Increased oxygen flow helps in respiratory rate and reduces breathing effort.

 

Ustrasana opens the chest and abdomen 

Ustrasana concentrates on the breath. Ustrasana stretches the chest and may open the thoracic cavity. There are several organs and tissues in the thoracic cavity, such as the lungs, trachea, heart, and esophagus. The camel pose can also stretch the abdomen and its side, releasing tight muscles from sitting all day.

 

Relief of hernias with Ustrasana 

The symptoms of a hernia include weak muscles, stress, anxiety, weight gain, muscle strain, and indigestion. Ustrasana may decrease anxiety, stress, and improve digestion, etc, and strengthen the core, and relieve stomach and intestinal hernias. 

 

Benefits of Ustrasana for singers 

Singing primarily involves the throat and chest. A throat muscle called the larynx contains the vocal cord, which lets us change pitch. Since ustrasana promotes rib cage expansion and breath control, it may be helpful for singers. It may help singers balance abdominal and thoracic pressure in a single breath to sing the complete set of musical notes.

 

Yoga poses like Ustrasana or camel pose can help strengthen muscles and maintain breathing. It’s a flexible pose that you can do with props and different arm positions. It’s important to learn this yoga asana under a trained yoga pro’s supervision.

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