Explore These 5 Yoga Poses for Your Core

Yoga poses to bring you back to your center.


Woman in the firefly yoga pose.

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Your core encompasses the central region of your body, including the pelvis, lower back, hips, and abdomen. By strengthening this area of your body, you could look and feel your best.

A well-developed core provides vital support for the spine and helps to reduce the risk of back pain and injury,according to the Mayo Clinic. It promotes balance and better posture, helping to align your  body properly and alleviating strain. Whether you're a seasoned yogi or new to the practice, these five poses can help you achieve a stronger and more resilient core.

Plank pose -  Phalakasana

The plank pose zones in on the core muscles. It is highly effective for strengthening, according to Healthline. Practicing this yoga pose  engages multiple core muscles simultaneously, and promotes proper alignment during yoga practice and improves overall posture. 

As you arrive on your mat, begin with a push-up position. Align your hands directly under your shoulders and your body in a straight line from head to heels. Engage your core by pulling your navel toward your spine. Hold here for 30 to 60 seconds while breathing deeply.

The plank yoga pose is good for your core.

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Boat Pose - Navasana

The boat pose serves as a fantastic core strengthener for multiple reasons. It primarily targets the rectus abdominis, hip flexors, and lower back muscles, according to the Yoga International  site , making it an excellent choice for core development. Additionally, this pose promotes better balance and posture and helps you establish a strong core foundation for various other yoga poses. It could also counteract the adverse effects of prolonged sitting, such as working at a computer desk all day.

Begin by sitting comfortably with your legs bent and your feet flat. Slightly lean back, lifting your feet off the ground, and balance on your sitting bones. Extend your legs and reach your arms forward, keeping them parallel to the ground. Hold this pose for 30 seconds to one minute.

Yoga class practicing the boat yoga pose.

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Side Plank - Vasisthasana

The side plank pose strengthens your lateral core by targeting the oblique abdominal muscles, according to the online teaching site Yoga U Online. It also contributes to spinal stabilization, doubling up as a spine strengthener. As a pose that’s gentle on the spine, the side plank is suitable for people with back or disc issues. With adaptable variations, it's an inclusive addition to any yoga practice.

Starting in a plank position, shift your weight to one hand and rotate your body. Stack your feet or stagger them for balance, and lift your opposite arm toward the ceiling. Hold this position for 30 seconds to a minute on each side.

A man doing the side plank pose in a guided yoga session.

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Dragonfly Pose - Maksikanagasana

As more of an advanced yoga posture, the dragonfly pose emphasizes core strength and flexibility, according to Tummee. It involves transitioning from the twist half chair pose into the dragonfly pose. As you practice this posture on both sides of your body, you'll strengthen your upper body, core, and hips, as well as deepen your spinal flexibility and balance. 

To enter the dragonfly pose, begin in the mountain pose. Then cross your right foot over your left thigh and bend your left knee like you're getting into the chair pose. Place your hands together in front of your chest. Inhale, twist to the left and put your right elbow against the inner sole of your right foot. 

From here, transition to a low squat with your hands on the mat to the left, ensuring your right foot is firmly on your right arm triceps. Extend your left leg to the right side, balance, and hold for a few breaths before repeating on the other side. Relax in child's pose to finish.

Practicing the dragonfly yoga pose.

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Firefly Pose - Tittibhasana

The firefly pose emphasizes your core muscles through a demanding arm balance pose. It requires energy and concentration, as well as a strong core, hip flexors, and arms, according to Yoga Journal. This pose challenges your strength, flexibility, and trust in your practice. It is an excellent posture for enhancing upper body strength while stretching your hamstrings and back torso. 

To practice the firefly pose, begin in a standing forward bend with slightly turned-out toes and bent knees. Take your right hand through your legs, clasp your right calf, and place your right shoulder behind your right knee. Then, put your right hand on the floor behind your heel with your fingers facing forward. 

Next, repeat the same process on the left side. Tilt your chest forward and gently lower your legs onto the backs of your upper arms. Inhale, lift your feet off the mat, and straighten your legs, choosing to point or flex your feet. Maintain the pose for 15 seconds or longer, then exhale and release.

A woman in the firefly yoga pose.

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