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4 Yoga Poses to Strengthen Your Core Muscles

Whether you are at a yoga retreat in Rishikesh or at a local yoga studio, your instructor is likely to ask you to engage your core in your yoga practice. Reason being, core muscles are involved in practice of each and every yoga pose. In addition, to achieve a better body alignment it is necessary to first have a better core strength. Having strong and flexible core muscles also adds grace to your yoga practice and provides stability while transitioning from one yoga pose to another.

Since every yoga pose requires you to involve your core muscles to some extent, it is clear that better core strength means more effective yoga practice. Here are a few yoga poses that will empower your yoga practice by strengthening your core muscles.

Let’s see how to do them through these simple instructions.

Bitilasana (Cow Pose)

Place your knees and palms on the ground, so that you are in a ‘tabletop’ position. Make sure your hands are directly below your shoulders and your knees hip distant apart. Keep your head in a neutral position and eyes on floor. Now with deep inhalation lift your head to look straight forward and let your chest rise. Then breathe-out slowly and let your head and chest regain their neutral position. Repeat this pattern 15 to 20 times.

Naukasana (Boat Pose)

Lie down on your back keeping your feet together and hands in relaxed position beside your body. Inhale deeply and lift your chest up and feet off the ground, while stretching arms towards feet. Make sure your hands are stretching towards your feet, and your eyes, fingers and toes should be at same level. Remain in this position for a few moments. Then with deep exhalation bring your head, hand and feet down on ground slowly.

Poorvottanasana (Upward Plank Pose)

Sit on the floor with your hands beside your hips and legs stretched straight in front of you. Keep your spine straight and don’t bend your arms. Now breathe-in and push your torso backward, so that your pelvis gets off the ground. Let your head fall back but make sure rest of your body is aligned straight. Your toes and sole should be touching the ground. Remain in this position as long as you can. Then lower your body with deep exhalation.

Pada Sanchalanasana (Cycling Pose)

First lay down on your back like in Shavasana. Lift you right leg up with bent knee and try to bring it toward your chest. Then straighten it and lift it towards the ceiling, while bending and lifting your left knee to your chest. Repeat the same pattern with left leg. Continue this cycle for a few minutes then reverse your legs’ movement.

All these simple-to-do poses, apart from strengthening our core muscles, benefit us in lot more ways. The cow pose is quite beneficial for our belly organs. Boat pose is known for improving the functioning of kidney, thyroid and other glands. Plank poses tone our belly and strengthen our limbs. And cycling pose is especially beneficial for people with obesity problems.


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