Uddiyana bandha & nauli

* Stand with your legs apart and hands on your thighs with knees bent and arms braced.
* Take a deep breath in then a strong and forcible expiration, completely emptying the lungs.

* With the lungs still empty, pull all the muscle of the abdominal sheath back towards the spine. Hold until you need to breathe when the bandha will be automatically released.

Uddiyana Bandha and nauli are always conducted after exhalation (rechaka) with Bahya Kumbhaka (external retention).

Uddiyana Bandha is the first stage of Nauli, Uddiyana Bandha terminates in Nauli.
* Precede as above.
* When the full Uddiyana Bandha is achieved, push forwards the superficial layer of the abdominal sheath the rectus abdominus, the deeper layers – external, internal oblique and transverse abdominus – will be kept back by the vacuum created through external retention.

Churning the nauli

The Sanskrit terms “Nau” and “li” mean “boat” and “to cling to”; this bowel “churning” resembles a boat on a rough sea.

* Repeat as above.
* Gently circle the pelvis to encourage the projected band of muscle to move circling one way to churn it in one direction and the other to churn in the opposite.
* Once the movement has been isolated, the pelvis turning can be minimised and eventually dispensed with all together.

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The Buddha reminds us of the right approach in his famous metaphor of the raft from the Majjhima Nikaya.

In it, he describes a situation, where a man standing on the near shore, which is dangerous, needs to get to the far shore, which is safe.

There are no bridges or ferries so he builds a raft; it is not fancy, but adequate to get him across. Once on that far shore it has served its purpose, and a wise man leaves it where it is, without dragging it with him as an encumbrance.

— Buddha