The frog posture or the Bhekasana is an intermediate practice that may be a little tough for beginners. However, it is an ideal asana for those looking to rejuvenate their knee joints or strengthen the internal organs, especially the stomach. With a bit of help, this frog posture can be practised by everyone, including beginners. Here’s a guide to doing the Bhekasana pose.
More About the Frog Posture
The word Bhekasana is got from the Sanskrit word Bheka, meaning frog, and asana which means pose. It is called so as the body resembles a frog when done in proper form. It is a reclining posture when you are down on the floor on the stomach. Since spreading the legs by the sides is difficult, some online yoga classes start with the yoga half frog pose or the Eka Pada Bhekasana. Even for people who have not been practising yoga for some time, it is difficult to do and needs flexibility. One has to gradually work and improve the range of motion and then attempt it. In the Bhekasana pose, the middle of the back is flexed, the knees are bent, and the feet are pushed to the ground. It works on muscle groups like the biceps, triceps, quadriceps, knees, lower back, abs, ankles, and feet. The Bhekasana yoga is used in Iyengar yoga and is always done in sequence and not as a standalone.
There are several benefits of doing the frog posture:
- First, it boosts the functioning of the adrenal glands by deep stretching the kidney and the stomach. By activating the adrenal glands, there is an influx of energy to the body. It also causes pressure in the lower abdomen, which stimulates the release of good hormones promoting digestion.
- Promotes the functioning of the reproductive and other internal organs. For example, the frog posture gives a deep stretch because all the internal organs are activated along with the various hormones needed for the proper function of the reproductive system.
- The backbend involved in the yoga half frog pose and the yoga frog pose improves mobility. It also increases the flexibility and range of motion in the various parts of the body. It also stretches the hips and legs, opening the muscles aiding in stronger legs. The upper body also gets a deep stretch hence the arms, shoulders, and chest benefit.
- In the Bhekasana, the body is bent backwards, and there is enough pressure on the chest and the lungs. That means the chest muscles get a stretch which increases the breathing capacity.
- Practising Bhekasana yoga needs a lot of body balance and control. There is pressure on the shoulders, chest, hands and back. Because of this, the muscles get a massage, which increases stamina and body control.
- Promotes better overall body posture, strengthens back muscles, hip joints, and knee joints.
- It relieves stress, anxiety and calms the mind and body.
Step-by-step Instructions for Frog Posture
Prerequisites for this pose
Prepare the body for this pose by doing some poses like the Virasna, Supta Virasana, Ustrasana, and Dhanurasana. Always perform these asanas on an empty stomach; keep the bowels and the bladder empty before starting the pose. Alternatively, you can also do this pose in the evening.
- Start the frog posture by lying on your stomach on the floor.
- Come up to your forearms by lifting the upper trunk and the head.
- Bend the right knee and bring the heel near the hip.
- Use your hands to bring the left foot towards the left hip by bending the leg.
- Keep the hands on top of the feet by rotating the elbows.
- Slowly lift your chest and take a deep breath.
- Hold in this posture for 30 to 50 seconds, and after that, start to release the body slowly by exhaling.
- Lie on the ground and relax. Repeat the posture as many times as you want.
Mistakes to Avoid while doing Frog Posture
- Arching the lower back: The Bhekasana benefits can only be obtained when you keep the back flat and the core tight. While it is challenging to engage the core its helps to release the inner thighs and hips muscles; a little practise can help cultivate it. Use props if needed to get the posture right.
- Beginners will have trouble lowering the body, keeping the knees apart and, the hips lose. But do it as much as you can and if you feel the stretch, you will get the pose’s benefits. Do not force your body as it can lead to injuries.
- Not breathing: One of the major frog pose benefits that you get is deep breathing. Do not hold your breath as it takes away the energy. If you breathe less, reduce the stretch.
Precautions to take if you have Problems
- Do not do the frog posture if you have stomach issues.
- Do not do this if you have knee or lower back problems.
- Make sure to warm up and activate the core muscles to prevent back injuries.
- Ensure that you press the knee gently onto the ground to prevent ankle and knee injuries.
- Do not rush this posture; it has to be done slowly and efficiently.
- Do the pose under a trainer or attend online yoga classes.
- Do this as your home workouts only after you have got body balance.
- People with high blood pressure and low blood pressure should not pose without supervision.
- Anytime during the practice, if you feel discomfort, exit and take a break; do not force yourself. Try the half frog yoga and then proceed to this.
To conclude, the frog posture is a challenging and demanding pose. If not done properly, it can lead to severe hip, back, and groin injuries. Yoga for beginners is best done under the watchful eyes of an experienced yoga teacher. Work on strengthening the muscles to prevent injuries. When it is done consistently and correctly, it can improve flexibility, build muscles that support the spine, and correct posture. If you are struggling, try the Eka Pada Bhekasana and move ahead once you can do this.
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