A Yogic Self-Test for Range of Motion
UDDIYANA BANDHA Upward Abdominal Lock This challenges your thoracic spine and rib cage to use their full ranges of motion at the costovertebral joints. The motion takes the ribs to their most elevated state, causing the diaphragm to stretch laterally. HOW TO
Stand with your feet slightly apart, eyes open. Inhale deeply through your nose, then exhale quickly and forcibly through your nose. Fully contract your abdominal muscles, pushing as much air as possible out of your lungs; then relax your abdominals. Perform what’s called a mock inhalation by expanding your rib cage as if you were inhaling, but don’t actually do so. This pulls the abdominal muscles up into the rib cage and creates a concave shape resembling an umbrella within the rib cage. Come into Jalandhara Bandha (Chin Lock). Hold for 5–15 seconds, then slowly let your belly descend, inhaling normally. Note: Perform this only on an empty stomach and only after an exhalation. If you’re pregnant, it’s OK to practice Uddiyana Bandha if you did so regularly before your pregnancy.