In Sanskrit “Bhujanga” means “Serpent or snake”, and “Asana” means “posture”. The English name is “Cobra pose”.
Position : Prone
Type : Backward bending
Spiritual Awareness : All seven chakras are affected
Physical Awareness : Arch of the back, abdomen and chest
Dosha Suitability : Vata and Pita can be benefitted.
Introducery Asanas : Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, Urdhva mukha svanasana
- Lie flat on the stomach with legs straight, feet together.
- Place the palms of the hands flat on the floor, below the shoulders next to the chest, spread your fingers, fingers pointing upwards towards the head.
- Position the arms so that the elbows point backwards and are close to the sides of the body.
- Rest forehead on the floor. Eyes are closed.
- Press the top of the feet and thighs and the pubis firmly into the floor.
- On an inhalation, gently lift the head and shoulders, using your back muscles beginning to straighten the arms to lift the chest off the floor, going only to the height at which the public bone remains in contact to the floor and the navel is raised a maximum of 3 cm or depending on flexibility to a comfortable height maintaining open chest, relaxing shoulders and using the back muscle for this backbend. This hands are there only as a support, not as a main lifting force.
- For beginners: Do not over do the backbend. To find the height at which you can work comfortably and avoid straining your back, take your hands off the floor for a moment, so that the height you find will be through extension.
- If the navel is raised too high the bend tends to be in the knees and not in the back. The arms may or may not be straight; this will depend on the flexibility of the back.
- Hold the pose anywhere from 15 to 30 seconds, breathing easily. Release gently back to the floor with an exhalation.
Back, abdomen, and chest.
- Any forward bend.
- Can be followed in conjunction with Shalabasana and Dhanurasana for effective general health of the back and spine.
- Stretches chest, lungs,shoulders and abdomen.
- Helps to remove backache and neck ache as well as keeping the spine supple and healthy.
- The pressure on the abdomen is also beneficial to the abdominal organs and in particular the digestive organs.
- Tones the kidneys which help with purification of blood, removing any stagnant blood and improving the health of the whole body.
- Strengthens the adrenal gland, which is responsible for secretions of adrenaline, cortisol and other stress hormones, the balancing effect on the harmone secretions is the benefit of asanas.
- Expands and opens the chest which encourages deep breathing as well as helping to correct rounded shoulders.
- In normal day-to-day life we do a lot of forward bending but notmuch backward bending, therefore it is good to practice for a healthy back and to give general balance to the body.
- Strengthens the spine. Useful for slipped disc and sciatica as it relieves the pain and can also relocate the slipped disc.
- Helps to relieve stress and fatigue.
- Therepeutic for Asthma.
- It stimulates the appetite, relieves flatulence and constipation.
- Tones the liver making it beneficial for those with a sluggish liver.
- Traditional texts say that Bhujangasana increases body heat, destroys disease and awakens Kundalini.
- Tones the ovaries and the uterus and helps to alleviate Gynaecological disorders such as leucorrhea Dysmenorrhoea and Amenorrhoea.
Precautions and Contraindications:
- Back injury
- Carpal tunnel syndrome