Be Healthy – Ride the Camel!
Sometimes the simplest things work best.
In Kundalini Yoga, perhaps the most fundamental posture or exercise is the seated spinal flex, sometimes called “Camel Ride” for its approximation of the natural movement that can occur when you are — riding a camel of course!
Camel Ride, or seated spinal flex, is often used as a yoga warmup and also makes its appearance in many Kundalini Yoga kriyas. Like many basic practices, it has powers and effects that may not be fully appreciated.
Many people report that practicing Camel Ride daily has greatly improved their overall back health and was instrumental in overcoming chronic low back pain. The rhythmic movement of the spine with the breath, however, brings many other benefits that, when taken all together, result in a strengthened immune system.
The lymphatic system is on the frontline of the body’s immune system functionality. The back and forth movement of the spine with a full breath is very effective in stimulating lymphatic circulation. The regular active breathing with the movement improves the function of the thymus to generate T-lymphocytes while greatly increasing the oxygen content of the blood.
Digestion is also improved through Camel Ride and that also has a positive effect on the immune system.
How to do Camel Ride:
- Place the hands on the shins, just above the ankles.
- Inhale and flex your spine forward.
- Exhale and flex your spine backward.
- Keep the head relatively level and steady throughout the movement.
- There is a gentle rocking on the sits bones.
In the early 1980s a variation of the Camel Ride practice was anecdotally found to help with the symptoms of the HIV virus by Shanti Shanti Kaur, a practicing Kundalini Yoga therapist. Her research showed that a strong aerobic capacity supports a healthy functioning thymus and is a factor in producing T cells and NK (natural killing cells) for dealing with viruses.
The movement in Camel Ride is simple, and benefits can occur in as little as 3 minutes of practice. An excellent way to build its effects is to practice it for 2 minutes, inhale deeply, relax for a moment, and then repeat five more 2 minute segments for a total of 12 minutes.
Some Kundalini practitioners gradually build the exercise by itself as a separate sadhana or meditation for up to 11 or 31 minutes.
One important variation of Camel Ride when doing for its aerobic and immune building aspects is the Kriya for Aerobic Capacity. This kriya involves retaining the breath for up to a minute while flexing the spine, gradually building up to 11-minutes. After a rest, the kriya is repeated again for another 11-minutes.
With practice and conscientious respect for your own abilities, the kriya can become a 22-minute practice with the breath retained for a minute each time.
Just time for one yoga exercise? Ride the Camel!
The Astrology of Epidemics: What in Rahu is Going On?
Friday, April 3rd
11 am Central US Time
Join Vedic Astrologers, Mehtab Benton and Tej Arvind, for a 45-minute look at what is happening in the world astrologically.
We will look at the role of the Vedic planet Rahu in the current virus epidemic, and what we may expect.
Special Stay at Home Price: $9.99