Uttana kurmasana (Inverted Tortoise) – How to Do and its Benefits

Yoga once again made its point, when it mercilessly toned down your thigh flab and at the same time made sure your early morning bathroom runs were limited to just once, a satisfying once. Once again yoga made it clear to you that even your tiredness has a solution to it. Basically, yoga is one stop solution.

Then again it was yoga who said you can be fit and hot and not enroll yourself in a gym toiling and boiling the sweat on your brows. This is why they finally regarded yoga as a handsome prince to your trapped damsel in distress. Amongst the many of them, here is a beneficial uttana kurmasana.

But before you get started, here are some take away tips that you may want to keep in mind.

  • Practicing early in the morning is a good way for an effective solution.
  • Ensure your bowel and stomach is clean before you practice.
  • Always start doing on an empty stomach. If morning does not work for you, consider doing it in the evening. Leave an appropriate gap of 4-6 hours after your meal and then get doing.

Uttana kurmasana

Uttana Kurmasana Steps:

Yoga is simply a game of stretches and twists, some complicated some as easy as a pumpkin pie on a summer noon. However, consiste3ncy is the key to everything. Even the difficult ones seem easy as a cake frosting if maintained with proper dedication and practice. The English name for this yoga posture is called the upside –down tortoise.

Uttana Kurmasana is defined in the Yogic texts as a cultural asana.

While the name sounds difficult to pronounce, it is one of the beneficial yoga that you need to start doing right away. To start off with the steps let’s spread our yoga mat.

  1. Start by sitting on your yoga mat, knees knelt as your hips rest on your heels.

See More: Extended Side Angle Pose

  1. The heels underneath your hips should be facing upward as you straighten out your spine properly.
  2. Your neck should be aligned to your spine and your arms beside you resting. Now take a deep inhale as you bend down trying to touch your forehead to the ground.
  3. At this time, while you inhale you would feel your stomach sucking back in making it easier for you to bend down.
  4. Once done, now you can bring your arms all the way around to the back and clasp them. The posture indeed looks easy but now comes the difficult part, holding the posture for a few seconds, maybe a minute for the best.
  5. As you release your posture now exhale and continue with normal breathing until you reach your base one position.
  6. There is another variation to this tortoise pose as well where instead of you kneeling down you stretch your lower limbs ahead and then bend down in between your legs. This can be a bit more difficult and thus is reserved for the pros.

See More: Upavista Konasana

What are the Health Benefits?

  • This is one of the best breathing yoga postures where as you bend down you lock your breath in creating a clogging in your nasal cavity. This is why this yoga is known for its miracle cure of painful sinuses. Bending down on the initial journey can however, be the cause of a light sting in your nasal cavity.
  • As you bend down, your abdomen now sucked in, gets a good massage in the pressure situation. The organs housing in it, namely the intestines therefore experiences a blood rush which flushes out any possible toxins from the system ensuring proper digestion.
  • This is also a good exercise to control irregular menstruation or painful cramps on or during the menstruation period. This is also appropriate for the pregnant ladies in their initial stages where they can opt for this exercise to strengthen their ovarian walls.
  • This is also a fat shredder which is evident as you bend down and massage your stomach holding in the organs with a locked inhale.
  • It improves the respiratory rate.
  • For those of you suffering from constipation, indigestion and nervous weakness, this will come as an effective medicine.
  • Since it keeps the prime focus of the mind inwards, it also helps improve concentration.
    It helps in controlling the bulkiness in and around the abdomen.

But what should you be aware of? Here is a list of precautions and contraindications we are listing out for you.

See More: Uddiyana Bandha Technique


  • For those of you with chronic injury to the hips, shoulders and neck, should not practice the upside-down tortoise or the Uttana Kuramasana.
  • Those suffering from muscle pull also need to stay away from practicing this.


  • Avoid doing it if pregnant. The pressure that is caused in the lower abdomen will cause uneasiness, making breathing fast and hard.
  • Understand your body: If your muscles around the hamstrings and the spine are too tight and stiff, it is at best not to practice this.
  • If you are suffering from sciatica, make no attempts at this. The pressure to the hip and the extension of the lumbar region will exert more pressure on the nerve, that will affect the whole leg.

Breathing plays a vital role in all the asanas we know of. In uttana kurmasana, bending forward will bring in adequate pressure to the abdomen and chest. Therefore, being aware of your breath along with the movement of the body is an absolute essential to prevent any injury. Proper functioning of the respiratory system is one of the biggest beneficial output that you can gain from this. Start today!

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