Boat Pose

Cues:

1. Sit on the floor with knees bent.

2. Exhale and  lift your feet off the floor, grabbing your knees with your hands, as in figure 114A. Lengthen your tailbone into the floor and lift your pubis toward your navel. If possible, slowly straighten your knees, raising the tips of your toes slightly above the level of your eyes, as in figure 1A. If this isn’t possible, remain with your knees bent, perhaps lifting the shins parallel to the floor.
 
3. Stretch your arms alongside the legs, parallel to each other and the floor. Spread the shoulder blades across your back and reach strongly out through the fingers. 
 
4. Try to keep the belly button in, lower belly relatively flat. Press the heads of the thigh bones toward the floor to help anchor the pose and lift the top sternum. Always keep the tongue on the roof of the mouth and your ear in line with your shoulder. Breathe easily. Tip the chin slightly toward the sternum, so the base of the skull lifts lightly away from the back of the neck.
 
5. Hold for 10-20 seconds.
 
Modifications:
1. Keep the knees bent if straightening the legs forces you into poor posture.
2. To increase intensity, lift the arms over head, as  in figure 1B.
 
Benefits:
1. Strengthens the abdomen, hip flexors, and spine. 
2. Stimulates the kidneys, thyroid and prostate glands, for males and intestines. 
3. Helps relieve stress.
4. Improves digestion.
 
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