Yoga for Belly Aches and Digestion

Part II of yoga for digestion:

A second action for massaging the abdominal organs is Nauli or abdominal churning. Nauli is considered a Kriya, one of the cleansing practices of yoga. It's intention is to stoke the digestive fires. Nauli should be practiced with an empty stomach and never attempted while pregnant. Nauli should be avoided by those with high blood pressure, hernias or ulcers.

In Nauli the practitioner learns to isolate different parts of the abdominal muscles in isolation. When mastered, the surface of the abdomen appears to move in a wave like fashion from side to side and up and down.

You begin as in Uddiyanda Bandha, inhaling and then exhaling completely, dropping your chin toward your sternum and hollowing the abdominal muscles upward.

As a beginner, try engaging the abdominal muscles on the left side separately from the right side, and vice versa. You can imagine you are pushing the organs toward the left side of your low back, then the right side, and back and forth.

As you gain some ability to work side of your abdomen in isolation, then begin to create a wave like motion across your abdomen.

You can create a similar action engaging a wave that moves up and down the front of the belly.

Don't overdo Nauli. Give it a try, be playful. If the practice makes you anxious stop and try it again another day.