MANOA YOGA CENTER
Ray Madigan demonstrates the camel pose.
(Camel Pose) »
This back-bending pose strengthens and tones the spine. It is beneficial for those with rounded shoulders and a sunken chest.
1) Kneel on the floor. You can use a blanket or yoga mat if the floor is hard.
2) Take the knees and feet apart, a distance no wider than the hips. Point the toes straight back and do not let the feet turn in or out.
3) Place the hands on the hips and roll the shoulders back as you lift the chest. Keep the buttocks tight and don't let the buttocks stick out.
4) Now, press the shins into the floor as you expand and lift the chest. Inhale, curve the spine and place the hands on the feet. If this is difficult, come up and put a chair or bench over the feet so that you can take the hands to this higher support.
5) As you stay in the pose, press the feet and shins down and tighten the backs of the legs. Keep the buttocks in and firm. Suck the spine into the body and up towards the ceiling, so that you feel an even stretch on the front of the body. Press the hands down, onto the feet, and turn the arms out to help fully spread and open the chest. Keeping the shoulders back, re-lift the chest and stretch the neck back.
6) Do not hold the breath. Breathe evenly through the nose and focus the mind inward as you work to symmetrically open the front of the body.
7) Remain for up to 30 seconds. To come out of the pose, bring the hands to the hips, press the shins down into the floor and evenly raise yourself up, without twisting the spine. Sit down and rest. Repeat two or three more times.
and Shelley Choy
are certified Iyengar Yoga teachers and co-direct the Manoa Yoga Center at Manoa Marketplace. Visit www.manoayoga.com
or call 382-3910. Manoa Yoga Center, the authors and the Star-Bulletin take no responsibility for any injury arising from the practice of these yoga postures. Readers should seek a doctor's approval before commencing this yoga practice.