Naukasana – Boat Pose

School of Yoga explains naukasana (Boat Pose)


Naukasana – Boat Pose

Naukasana technique: 

  • Sthithi (starting) position: Sit on the floor with legs stretched out ahead.
  • Place hands, palm down, next to the thigh. Breathe in.
  • Breathing out, bend the torso forward, using the hands and abdominal muscles, lift legs up as far as possible.
  • When legs are steady, remove hands from the side and stretch it toward toes.
  • Keep legs straight
  • Keep eyes, thumbs and toes in a straight line. 
  • Balance body on buttocks. maintain shallow breathing.
  • Hold of 5 counts. Increase to 30.
  • Breathing in, slowly come back to sthithi (starting) position. Repeat 3-5 times.
  • The drishti (gaze) recommended is padayogre-drishti (tip of the toe gaze).

Naukasana benefits 

  • This asana is excellent for removal of adipose tissue around the abdomen.
  • Also, downward pressure of the abdomen on the colon sets up peristalsis and cures constipation.
  • The upward movement of the torso and legs increases muscle tension on all elements of the muscles of the upper and lower back.
  • The thigh, hamstring and calf muscles get strengthened on account of the forced leg stretching action which is required to keep the leg up.
  • This asana rejuvenates cartilages and muscles in the spine as well as the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system.
  •  Menstruation related issues are resolved by this asana.
  • This asana is good for increasing sense of balance.

Naukasana contraindications 

  • Do not perform this asana if you are suffering from lower back problems and hernia.
  • If you have blood pressure, consult a doctor before practicing naukasana.
  • Do not perform this asana during menstruation or pregnancy.

Some noteworthy points on Naukasana :

Internal Links: Dharma (conditioning), Stress and Situational Awareness, Prana, Asana overview 1, Asana Overview 2, Asana Focus or gazing, Pranayama, Paschimotanasana

External Links: Prana, Chakra, Pancha Tattva, Pancha Prana, Pancha Kosha, Nadi

  • Do not do this exercise if in case of high BP, cervical spondylitis, hernia or renal disease etc.
  • Do not relax abdomen. It can cause the walls to collapse and tearing of the inguinal hernia.
  • Do not take hands back as in paschimotanasana to use the momentum of the forward hand movement to lift torso. A sudden jerk could result in stomach cramps.
  • Keep knees together and legs straight for maximum benefit.
  • The subsidiary benefits are increased flexibility of the ankles, knees, hips and lower back.
Editor at School Of Yoga
School Of Yoga is a single point resource for all aspects of Classical Yoga practise. We try to achieve this by placing Yoga's traditional methodology in front of the reader and eliciting his or her experience. We value everyone's Yoga experience and would like you to share and enrich other practitioners so that everyone benefits.
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