Scroll through your Instagram, and you’re likely to see many beautiful warrior II and tree poses these days. Yoga has long gone mainstream, which is why we were stopped in our tracks—err, feeds—recently when we spotted what might just be the world’s most interesting-looking yoga technique ever: nauli.
To help explain this gut-twisting move, we reached out to THE/THIRTY contributor and yoga instructor Danielle Acoff for her take. Read on to learn how nauli can benefit your digestion and strengthen your core.
What is Nauli?
“Nauli kriya is a powerful technique that stimulates the digestive fire by massaging all the organs in the abdomen (i.e. the stomach, the liver, spleen, urinary bladder, pancreas, gallbladder, and the intestines),” Acoff explains. “It is used in the traditional Indian medicine practice of Ayurveda, as well as Hatha yoga.”
Benefits of Nauli
According to Acoff, nauli has four main benefits:
- It massages all the internal organs in the abdomen and keeps them healthy.
- It relieves constipation.
- It strengthens and tones abdominal muscle.
- It helps prep for inversions.
See it in action below.
How to Practice Nauli Properly
So you want to try this at home? Keep in mind that nauli is great for everyone except those who are pregnant, menstruating, or those with heart disease and ulcers. Also note that the technique should only be practiced on an empty stomach. Here’s Acoff’s step-by-step guide:
- To start, take a few deep, cleansing breaths.
- Place your knees a little wider than your hips, and your hands on your knees.
- Keep a flat back, and exhale all the air out of your lungs.
- Mimic the act of inhaling, and vacuum the stomach under the ribs. Then move your weight to the side, and try to roll the centre of your stomach or rectus abdominis.
PS: Just for fun, we dare you to check out #nauli on Instagram. It’s a wild world we live in.