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Friday, April 11, 2008

Camel Posture (Ushtra Asana)

Pacifies And Calms: Kapha, Vata
Good For:


Position of Readiness:

You need to have something soft underneath the knees for making this asana. Put a blanket or a towel on the floor. First be seated on the soft floor. Fold the legs at the knees and keep them apart from one another at about six inches. Then sit on the knees and let the ankles and toes of both legs fall flat on the floor. Keep the heels about six inches apart. Now the back of the knees, the calves and would be in an upward position. This is the position of readiness for Ushtra Asana.

Steps for Actual Practice:

(1) Kneel and catch hold of the back of the ankles of right leg with the right hand. Hold it firmly. If you cannot reach above the heel, you may just catch the heels.

(2) Now catch hold of the left heel or the back of the left ankle with the left hand. Make the grip firm.

(3) Holding the heels or the back of the ankles, straighten the thighs and waist. Bend the head and neck backwards as much as you can. Push the waist area slightly forward. Breathe normally and stay in that position for six to eight seconds.

(4) After holding for the desired seconds return to the position of readiness with the following process: Release the left hand first and straighten up the left side of the body a little. Then release the right hand and make the body straight and in the kneeling position. If possible, sit down on the soles and in between the heels and then rest. You have completed one round of Ushtra Asana.

(5) After resting for six to eight seconds make some more rounds by following the same process.

Daily Practice:

Do it only twice daily during the first week. During the second week and afterwards repeat it a maximum of four times daily.


For the asthmatics Ushtra Asana brings a good effect upon the whole of respiratory system. This asana activates the facial tissues, the nasal passages, the pharynx, the lungs and the whole of respiratory organs and the nerves. Because of internal as well as external activation during this asana, the weekend condition of the organs of respiration is corrected and their normal health is restored.

Ushtra Asana has several good benefits for the general practitioners. It corrects any disorders of the neck shoulders and the spine. It cures various types of visionary defects of the eyes and strengthens all the sense organs. People suffering from throat trouble, tonsil, voice defect and chronic headache will find this asana very beneficial. It has also a good conditioning effect upon the muscles of the chest and in making the chest area proportionate in size. It is not a difficult asana. With a little practice any person can do it.

This asana belongs to the category of Vajrasana. It should be practiced after practicing Vajrasana. ‘ Ustra ‘ means a camel. In this asana almost all the limbs o f the body are arched like those of a camel. SO it is called Ushtrasana.


  1. Kneel on the ground as in Vajrasana keeping the distance of about fifteen centimeters between the knees and between the heels. Breathe deeply.
  2. Hold the right ankles firmly with right hand and left ankles with the left hand.
  3. Raise the arms and take them behind the neck. Breath in a normal way.
  4. Hold this position for six to eight seconds. Repeat this asana two or three times a day.


(1) This asana activates the respiratory system and so it is beneficial to those who suffer from asthma.

(2) The body becomes weak when there are impurities in the blood or when the flesh and the semen are diseased. In such cased, this asana is beneficial.

(3) This asana cures diseases caused by ‘vata’, ‘pitta’ and ‘kapha’ (wind, bile, and phlegm).

(4) The practice of this asana cures all types of diseases related to fistula. It has a soothing effect on mennorrhagia and diabetes.

(5) It removes pain in the neck, the shoulders and the spine.

(6) It improves eyesight.

(7) It helps to alleviate headache and trouble in the voice and the tonsils.

(8) I t gives proper exercise to the chest and makes it shapely

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