Naukasana has the shape of a boat. It is one of the few Yoga poses and asanas that can be performed by both lying on your back like Supine position and as well as by the stomach in Prone position. Boat pose is very good from health point of view. It also forms a part of the Padma Sadhana sequence.
Steps for Naukasana
The step by step procedure will be to Lie on the back with feet together and arms beside the body. Take a deep breath and hold the breath and then raise the legs, shoulders, head off the ground, lift the chest and feet, stretching the arms towards the feet. Eyes, fingers, and toes should be in a line. The shoulders and feet should be not more than 15 cm off the floor. Balance the body on the buttocks, keeping the spine straight. Arms should be held at the same level and in line with the toes. Hands should be open with the palms down. The tension can be felt in navel area as the abdominal muscles contract. Keep breathing deeply and easily while maintaining the pose. Hold the position for few seconds. During exhale, come back to the ground slowly and relax. Duration of this asana would be 3-4 repetitions daily but should not over do.
The main benefit of this asana is that it strengthens the back and abdominal muscles, tones the leg and arm muscles, useful for people with a hernia. It helps to remove belly fat and improves digestion. Helps in developing six packs. Improves the circulation of blood throughout the body. Gives strength to thigh, hips, shoulder, and neck. Regulates the function of liver, pancreas, and lungs. Maintains the function of kidney, thyroid and prostate glands. Boat pose is very good from health point of view as it not only stretches the abdominal muscles but also tones all the vital organs of the abdomen. It is helpful to treat pancreas, liver, kidney and gastric juices related problems.
There are certain points to be kept in mind while doing this asana. It is not recommended to practice this yoga pose or asana with low blood pressure, severe headache, migraine, or have suffered from some chronic diseases or spinal disorders in the recent past. Asthma and heart patients are advised to avoid this pose. Women should avoid during pregnancy and during the first two days of the menstrual cycle.
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