Cobra Pose is a great gentle backbend which is accessible to beginners. Seasoned yogis are also encouraged to practice this posture, especially at the beginning of their practice in order to warm up the spine. Backbends such as this one are energizing and invigorating!
Start by lying belly-down. The arms are along side the body and the legs hips distance apart and extended behind you. Tops of the feet are on the earth.
Place your hands, with the fingers spread wide next to your lower ribs. Your fingertips should be inline with your nipples.
Elbows are directly above your wrists and are hugging the ribcage.
Engage your belly by gently drawing the navel in and up towards the spine
On an inhale, keep the core engagement as you peel the chest off the earth. Keep your lower ribs on the earth as you firmly root down through the pubic bone, thighs and the tops of the feet. The hands should have almost no weight in them as the lower body and core engagement should keep you in proper alignment.
Draw the shoulders away from the ears, broaden the collarbones and shine the heart. The backbend is initiated in the thoracic spine (in the back of your heart). Be mindful not to dump into your lower back or over arch your lower spine.
Your gaze is forward or upward but make sure not to crunch the neck.
To get out of the posture gently lower yourself back down to the earth
- Increases flexibility in the spine
- Strengthens spine, shoulders and core
- Energizes the body and mind
- Pregnant women should not practice this posture
- Anyone with lower back or wrists injuries should avoid this pose