When we talk about losing weight and shaping up of the body then the top most priority is to get a flat belly. Desiring something is different from actually getting it. Belly fat is known as the stubborn fat as it takes longer time to fade away but nothing is impossible with yoga. You can try a simple, easy and most effective pose “the Kumbhakasana” or plank pose to tone up your trouble areas like arms, shoulders, belly, buttock and thighs. The whole exercise focuses on the core muscles by raising the glutes in air and holding it tightly which gives you flat and toned abs with consistent practice. Let’s see how you can do this.
- Lie on your stomach on the floor
- Take a push up position by placing your hands beside your face and balancing your feet on the toes.
- Raise your torso and hips into the air by supporting the upper body on your stretched hands which are perpendicular to the floor. Head facing downward and straighten the back.
- Pull your belly button towards your spine and you should feel the tightness in your stomach muscles.
- Hold this position for a minute and keep your fingers together to stop them from flaring out.
- Bring down your body by bending your knees and roll down to your side to get into sit up position.
- Relax and repeat the steps.
Tips and cautions
- Lift up your chest and mid abdomen off the floor as much as you can to deepen the pose.
- Keep your knees and feet hip width apart and not more than that otherwise you can injure your lower back.
- Persons suffering from back or shoulder problems, high blood pressure and migraine should avoid this pose.
- Keep the half frog pose by bending your knees until you are ready for the full plank pose. You can also use a bolster and place it under your ribcage for support.
- Stretches the back, hips and legs.
- Strengthens and tone up the muscles of shoulders, arms, core, hips and thighs
- Improves posture by opening the entire front body
- It also improves deep breathing by stretching the muscles surrounding the lungs.
- Best exercise for persons suffering from flat feet or fallen arches.
- It helps in burning of belly fat
- Improves digestion and metabolism
- Improves balance and stability
- Increases flexibility in the posterior muscle groups
- Relaxes stiff and tensed muscle groups and thus boost your mood
There are many variations of this exercise which gives you perfect abs and every variation works on different set of muscle groups. Here are some popular variations of plank pose.
Cross plank pose
Get into a plank position and cross one ankle on top of the other. Squeeze the thighs together to work on the quads and core muscles. Hold the position and repeat for the other side.
Half pushup pose
Take a plank pose but keep your forearm beside your chest region and upper arms parallel to the torso means elbows tucked to the sides.
Wide plank position
Take a plank position but place your feet wider than the hip width to also engage the inner leg muscles or adductors along with quads and glutes.
Side plank pose
Lie down your right side with straight legs and raise your upper body on your right forearm. Your body should form a diagonal line from head to toe and your knees and hips should be off the floor. Lift your left arm and leg in air and hold it for 3 breathes. Bring them down and relax. Switch the sides and repeat the steps.