Bhujangasana: Steps, Health Benefits, Variations, Tips

Bhujangasana: Steps, Health Benefits, Variations, Tips

B
Bajaj Finserv Health
February 18, 20228 mins read

Key Takeaways

  • Bhujangasana is a Sanskrit word for the cobra pose in yoga
  • The bhujangasana yoga pose activates 37% of your body’s muscles
  • Cobra pose benefits your health by improving your sleep and posture

If you are looking to do yoga for sciatica pain, you must try bhujangasana. Its name comes from Sanskrit words ‘bhujanga’ (snake or cobra) and ‘asana’ (posture or exercise). This is why the bhujangasana yoga pose is known as cobra pose. This reclining back-bending pose is also a part of the sun salutation series. 

There are many cobra pose benefits for better health. In fact, when you do the bhujangasana during surya namaskar, you activate 37% of your body’s muscles [1]. Read on to know more about how bhujangasana benefits your body.

Bhujangasana Yoga Means

Bhujangasana, often known as the snake posture, is a famous yoga asana.

Bhujangasana is very significant since it benefits all of the body's systems. The term Bhujangasana is derived from the Sanskrit words 'Bhujanga,' which means snake or serpent, and 'Asana,' which means 'posture.' As a result, it is known as the cobra stance because it resembles the position of a cobra with its hood lifted.

Bhujangasana can assist in toning the belly, strengthening the spine, and, most significantly, enhancing blood circulation. Bhujangasana is a full-body asana that improves both spiritual and physical wellness. For example, it may be useful to your back while also improving your digestion. It is also regarded as one of the most effective asanas for achieving a flat stomach.

Bhujangasana Yoga Variations

Bhujangasana is available in four variations:

  • Because the end posture resembles the Egyptian sphinx, the half-cobra stance (Ardha Bhujangasana) is also known as the sphinx pose. This increases overall flexibility and may help those with stiff, tight backs.
  • Cobra stance with the raised hand is an excellent gluteus or buttocks workout. It can also be used to trim fat from the waistline.
  • Cobra posture (Saral Hasta Bhujangasana), also known as the advanced version of Bhujangasana, is a classic pose in which we elevate the head like a cobra's hood while supporting the upper body with extended arms.
  • Curved hand cobra position (Vakra Hasta Bhujangasana) may aid in boosting digestive system productivity.
types of Bhujangasana yoga

Bhujangasana Benefits 

Menstrual irregularities are controlled

When practiced frequently, the Cobra posture aids in regulating irregular menstrual periods. It also helps with cramps and agony during menstruation. A healthy reproductive system requires a regular cycle. Menstrual irregularities are thus controlled.

The Kundalini Chakra is unblocked

You may unblock your Kundalini chakra, which is latent at the base of the spine, using bhujangasana practices. Your life will become stagnate if any of the seven energy chakras are blocked, causing physical, mental, and spiritual illnesses. When chakras are active and aroused, energy flows effortlessly through the body, soul, and mind.

Assists in the relief of pain caused by injuries

The cobra stance acts as a cushion, protecting your body from excruciating agony caused by inevitable accidents. It extends the frontal planes, making them more flexible and releasing muscular tension. Furthermore, it alleviates leg sciatica pain by easing spinal impingement.

Improves the Reproductive System

When it comes to reviving the hormone system and reproduction, the Cobra position can aid in various ways if practiced daily. It improves blood flow to the uterus and ovaries, detoxifies the body, and alleviates anxiety and stress, all of which help strengthen the reproductive system.

Relieves Lower Back and Spine Pain

The way we work and sit can stiffen up our upper body muscles. Practicing cobra pose helps your back muscles by promoting good blood circulation. It strengthens your hips and spine by stretching them. A study found that practicing yoga including the cobra pose for 12 weeks reduced lower back pain and anxiety [2].

Reduces Belly Fat and Improves Posture

This pose helps reduce the fat in your stomach as it stretches your abdominal muscles. It also strengthens your core muscles. The modern sedentary lifestyle also leads to bad body posture. Practicing this asana is beneficial in tackling problems like slumping shoulders and slouching. This is because the cobra pose strengthens your back muscles.

Boosts Flexibility and Blood Circulation

Do you feel that your body is stiff and tight? If yes, bhujangasana is the right pose for you to try. It stretches the muscles in your chest, spine, shoulders, hips, and back. This helps your body become more flexible. The cobra pose also improves blood circulation throughout the body. You can manage stress and anxiety better when the blood supply to your brain increases.

Helps in Asthma Prevention

You can also practice cobra pose daily for asthma treatment. Bhujangasana provides therapeutic benefits by helping you expand your chest and open the rib cage. The increase of blood circulation improves oxygen supply to all the organs and tissues in your body. 

Additional read: Yoga for Lungs

Relieves Stress and Depression

A study of individuals with mild to moderate depression concluded that an 8-week hatha yoga program including cobra pose led to significant improvement [3]. Bhujangasana in particular is linked with the feeling of upliftment and elevation [4]. As you lift your chest while performing this asana, it enhances blood flow thereby supporting your heart health. Cobra pose is also said to help you get rid of negative emotions, which further relieves stress and fatigue.

Improves Sleep

Practicing yoga, particularly the cobra pose, helps you get a good night’s rest. This was further proved by a study that compared sleep quality as a result of yoga versus aerobic exercise among women with type 2 diabetes [5]. 

Helps in Proper Digestion

As you lie down on your stomach during this pose, you put pressure on your intestinal muscles. This stimulates your abdominal muscles, which helps in proper digestion. Practicing cobra pose daily also burns abdominal fat, helping you get fitter! 

Strengthens Muscles and Reduces Inflammation

Performing the cobra pose daily builds your biceps and triceps. This is because the weight of your body is supported by your hands during this pose. This also strengthens your core and leads to better fitness. A study also found that practicing the bhujangasana yoga pose along with other asanas significantly reduced inflammation in people with rheumatoid arthritis [6].

Additional read: Yoga for COVID Patients

Bhujangasana Steps To Do

Follow the steps below to perform this yoga pose:

  • Lie down with your stomach on the ground
  • Place your arms on the ground near your chest and raise your torso slowly
  • Ensure you keep your elbows straight
  • Lift your upper body including your head, neck, shoulders, and chest
  • Make sure that you put your body weight on your hand and thighs, and not on your stomach
  • Hold your breath and bend your neck slowly while feeling some pressure on your spine
  • Stay in the cobra pose for around 30-45 seconds and breathe in and out
  • Release the position slowly by lowering your abdomen, followed by the torso and head. Exhale while doing so

Bhujangasana Tips For Beginners

While Bhujangasana has several advantages and is accessible to practically everyone, it is sometimes suggested to avoid it.

  • Jerks and overstretching should be avoided.
  • Your shoulders may naturally migrate away from your ears. Maintain their relaxation, even if it requires bending your elbows. Regular practice will allow you to extend the stretch by extending the elbows.
  • Check that your feet are still touching.
  • Evenly breathe while holding the stance.
  • If you are pregnant, avoid practicing Bhujangasana.
  • It is not recommended if you have shattered ribs or wrists or just had abdominal surgery, such as for a hernia.
  • If you have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, avoid practicing Bhujangasana.
  • Do not perform this yoga posture if you are having an asthma episode.
  • If you have a history of chronic ailments or spinal issues, practice the Cobra Pose with the help of a certified teacher.

All yoga asanas should ideally be performed under the supervision of a qualified instructor.

Bhujangasana Tips For Beginners

Prerequisites for Bhujangasana

  • Only practice Bhujangasana if you are healthy and fit. This yoga asana should not be performed if you have just had surgery or if you are pregnant. As a result, before you begin, make sure that practicing Bhujangasana is safe for you.
  • A yoga mat is required to do Bhujangasana. A yoga mat will be useful since you will need to lay your knees and elbows on the ground.
  • Avoid performing Bhujangasana right after eating. You should wait at least three to four hours.
  • To prepare your body for Bhujangasana, perform some fundamental stretching exercises.

Risks of Bhujangasana

Even though there are various advantages when performing a cobra position in yoga, it may damage the body if done incorrectly. Some of the contraindications of Bhujangasana are as follows:

Surgery

Avoid practicing Bhujangasana if you have recently had a neck, spine, chest, hand, knee, hip, or other surgery. If you are currently healing from surgery, consult your doctor before performing Bhujangasana.

Injury

Just like surgery, you should not perform Bhujangasana if you have an internal or external injury on your body. It might worsen your situation by placing strain on the affected region.

Inadequate Physical Strength

If you have a weak core and haven't done any physical strength training previously, you shouldn't do Bhujangasana right away. Begin with easy yoga asanas before progressing to the cobra stance.

Pregnant Ladies

Pregnant women should avoid practicing Bhujangasana. It exerts pressure on the abdomen, which might injure the fetus.

Senior Citizens

Because bones weaken and are brittle with age, senior citizens should avoid doing Bhujangasana.

Doing yoga poses including bhujangasana improves your mental, emotional, and physical health [7]. Now that you know the benefits of this specific pose, add it to you daily routine. If you have back pain or other concerning symptoms, you can book an online doctor consultation on Bajaj Finserv Health. Choose from a variety of experts from fields like yoga and naturopathy, Ayurveda and more and get health advice from the comfort of your home!

Bhujangasana: Steps, Health Benefits, Variations, Tips banner
  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7336940/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5031167/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5354384/
  4. http://ijhbr.com/pdf/61-66.pdf
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5612039/
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7492675/
  7. https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/yoga-what-you-need-to-know

Please note that this article is solely meant for informational purposes and Bajaj Finserv Health Limited (“BFHL”) does not shoulder any responsibility of the views/advice/information expressed/given by the writer/reviewer/originator. This article should not be considered as a substitute for any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your trusted physician/qualified healthcare professional to evaluate your medical condition. The above article has been reviewed by a qualified doctor and BFHL is not responsible for any damages for any information or services provided by any third party.

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