Bhujangasana or the Cobra pose is among the most versatile yoga postures which are imperative in the yoga practice all attributed to its enormous health benefits. It is amazing backbend which strengthens, flexes, and tones the spine. It also makes both reproductive and digestive systems more efficient. It also assists in opening up the chakras too. The Bhujangasana works on four of the important chakras, namely, the Anahata Chakra, the Visuddhi Chakra, the Svadhisthana Chakra and Manipura Chakra. When this pose is practiced by keeping the eyes opened, as you look up, the optical nerves as well as vision benefit from this pose. It is the eighth pose of the Surya Namaskar 12 poses. It is also helpful in energizing backbend which resembles the raised head of a cobra.
In order to do this asana, you need to ensure that you have stomach and bowels empty before practicing this asana. It is better to have the meals at least 5 to 6 hours before you perform this asana so that the food gets easily digested and there is ample energy to expand during its practice. It is recommended to practice this yoga earlier in the morning. But if you can’t make it, then you can also practice this in the evening.
Steps to do Bhujangasana
- First, you have to lie flat on the stomach. Now place the hands on the side and make sure that the toes touch each other.
- Then move the hands to your front such that they are at the level of shoulders and place the palms on the floor.
- Now place the weight of the body on the palms, inhale and then raise the head as well as the trunk. Note that the arms should be particularly bent at the elbows at this stage.
- Now, you have to arch the neck backward in order to attempt to replicate the posture of a cobra with the raised hood. Make sure that the shoulder blades are significantly firm and the shoulders are far away from the ears.
- Now press the hips, feet, and thighs to the floor.
- Hold this position for nearly 20 to 30 seconds and breathe normally during it. Feel that the stomach is pressed well against the floor. With this practice, you will be able to hold this asana for nearly 2 minutes.
- In order to release this pose, slowly bring the hands back to your sides. Now rest the head on the ground by means of bringing the forehead touched with the floor. Place the hands under the head. Then slowly rest the head on one side and then breathe.
Precautions and Contraindications
This particular asana should be avoided by people suffering from various problems such as:
- A hernia.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Back injuries.
- Recent abdominal surgeries.
- Also, pregnant women shouldn’t do this asana.
If you are a beginner, then you shouldn’t go all into this asana. In case you do, you would most probably end up straining the neck and the back. You need to find the height which is suitable for you and make sure that you don’t strain the back as well as the neck. Once you have done it, take the hands off the floor for few seconds such that you have a complete extension.
Benefits of Bhujangasana
There are a plethora of amazing benefits of this asana which are mentioned below:
- It is a complete deep backbend which makes your spine more flexible and stronger.
- It tones that organs that lie in your lower abdomen.
- It also stimulates the reproductive, digestive and urinary systems.
- It assists in regulating metabolism and hence helps in balancing the weight.
- It firms up the buttocks.
- It provides the lungs, chest, shoulders and abdomen, a good stretch.
- It helps in releasing stress.
- It is known to open up the heart and the lungs.
- It relieves asthma and sciatica.