Nauli | Breathing | Awareness | Precautions

Normal breathing in the starting position. Deep exhalation combined with uddiyana bandha before isolation of rectus abdominii muscles. Hold the breath while contracting the abdominal muscles. Controlled inhalation after releasing the muscular contraction. Normal breathing before the next round.

Successive contractions

In order to develop muscular control, beginners can if they wish successively contract and relax the muscles in the final position. That is, quickly contract and relax the abdominal muscles while retaining the breath. This applies mainly to madhyama nauli, though it can also be performed for vama and dakshina nauli.


You should pay full attention to the control of the muscles. If you watch the muscles you will find that control becomes easier.

Time of practice

Nauli should only be practised when the stomach is empty; that is, at least five to six hours after meals. The best time to practise is early in the morning before breakfast.


If you feel any pain in the abdomen during nauli you should immediately stop the practice. Try nauli the following day or when the pain subsides. If the pain persists then you should seek proper guidance from an experienced yoga teacher or doctor.


Nauli should not be attempted by people suffering from any serious ailment such as:

  • high blood pressure
  • gallstones
  • hernia
  • peptic or duodenal ulcer

If you are in doubt seek the advice of a yoga teacher.

Pregnant women should not practise nauli. However, after childbirth we suggest the practice of nauli (under the guidance of a qualified yoga teacher) in order to strengthen the abdominal and pelvic muscles and to reshape the body and readjust the position of the inner organs.


At first you should not do too many rounds. If you are trying to master madhyama nauli then five or six rounds is more than sufficient at first. With practice you can do a maximum of about ten rounds If you are trying to master vama and dakshina nauli then three to five rounds each is sufficient. Do not strain under any circumstances. You must pay attention to your body and stop if you feel even a little tired.

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