POSTURE BREAKDOWN: Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)

Pin now, master later!

Pin now, master later!

Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)

Step-By-Step

  1. Start by laying facedown on the ground.
  2. Stretch your legs back and press the tops of your thighs and the top of your feet down to the ground.
  3. Bring your hands under your shoulders, spreading your fingers.
  4. Hug your elbows to your body.
  5. Inhale straightening your arms to lift your chest up off the floor.
  6. As you lift your chest, focus first on lengthening your spine before lifting up and back, making sure not to squish your lower back.
  7. Press your shoulder blades against your back.
  8. As you lift your chest, keep your pubis pressed down to the ground.
  9. Your buttock should be firm but not completely tightened.
  10. Hold for 3-5 breaths.
  11. After 3-5 breaths slowly lower your chest back down to the ground. 
  12. Push back into Child's Pose and rest for a few breaths.

NOTE: Don't forget to lengthen your spine while you lift up and back as well. To ensure you are lengthening your spine, briefly lift your hands up off the ground while lifted in this pose. This will help avoid any strain.

MODIFICATION: If you are very tight, you can practice a modified version of this pose with a metal folding chair up against the wall. Open the chair and press it against the wall so it won't move on you, with the front seat facing you. Place your hands on the front of the seat coming forward on the balls of your feet. Follow the same prompts up above.

Benefits (Source: Yoga Journal)

  • Stretches your chest and lungs, shoulders, and abdomen
  • Strengthens the spine
  • Firms your buttocks
  • Stimulates abdominal organs
  • Opens the heart and lungs
  • Relieves stress and fatigue
  • Soothes sciatica
  • Therapeutic for asthma

Cautions

Do not try this pose if you are pregnant.

Prep Poses (do these before cobra pose)

Follow-Up Poses (do these after cobra pose)

  • Backbends (Camel, Bridge, Wheel, etc)