Step by step
- Come onto your knees, place them hip-width apart, and then tuck your toes.
- Engage your inner thighs, draw your lower belly in and up, and roll your shoulders back
- On an inhalation, lengthen through both side waists, lift the chest up,
- With the lower body stable, on an exhale start to come into your backbend keeping the chest lifted and without crunching the neck or lower back
- As you lean back, find your blocks or heels with your hands – or you can do this one side at a time by circling one arm up and behind you
- Keep your inner thighs engaged, firm the shoulder blades into the back and stay for a couple of breaths
- Use your inhalation to help you come back up, then sit on your heels with a neutral spine for a moment.
Tips for beginners
- If your hands don’t comfortably reach your heels use blocks on the side of each foot or place your hands on your hips instead
- Try placing a block between your thighs and squeeze it to activate your inner thighs
- Visualise lifting your breast bone to the sky.
Benefits of the camel pose
- Helps with mobility in the shoulders and upper back
- Stretches the whole front of the body
- Strengthens the legs and back.
- Improves your posture
- Energises body and mind.
Pay attention to
- If you have any tension or sensitivity in your neck, or if you feel lightheaded, keep your neck in a neutral position or with the chin towards the chest so that the back of the neck stays long and relaxed
- If you have a back injury, a more gentle backbend like Cobra or Sphinx pose may be more suitable – please check with your medical practitioner for specific advice
- Use a blanket under your knees or double up your mat to reduce any knee sensitivity Note – this will raise your knees and so may mean your hands have further to reach back to your heels, so use blocks if needed.