Uddiyana Bandha

Definition - What does Uddiyana Bandha mean?

Uddiyana bandha is considered one of the three classical bandha asanas and is not only practiced to strengthen and tone abdominal muscles, but also to practice meditative, controlled breathing and to energize the body. In Sanskrit, uddiyana means “upward” and bandha means “binding," "uniting" or "contracting.”

To enter the pose, begin in a standing position on the mat with feet set apart the distance of the hips. Slightly angle the body forward from the waist and bend the knees lightly. Ground the hands on the knees or tops of the thighs. Take a deep inhalation while pushing the stomach forward, then forcefully and quickly exhale until the lungs are completely empty. Tighten the abs until the navel area is pulled back against the mid-spine. Hold the pose until the next inhalation (about five to 15 seconds), and repeat three to 10 rounds of this abdominal lock.

Uddiyana bandha is known as upward abdominal lock in English.

Yogapedia explains Uddiyana Bandha

Individuals can enter uddiyana bandha from a standing or seated position. It is recommended for beginners to practice it in a standing position before attempting the asana from a comfortable seated position on the mat for pranayama.

In a spiritual yoga practice, it is often considered that one should not do uddiyana bandha without mula bandha. It is believed uddiyana bandha completes mula bandha, as uddiyana bandha continues to move energy harnessed through the chakras to the heart with more force than practicing mula bandha alone.

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