How to Strengthen Your Solar Plexus

Crunches target your stomach muscles and solar plexus.
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The term "solar plexus" could refer physically to the center of your abdominals or spiritually to your third chakra in yogic or Eastern philosophy. A weak third chakra is related to emotional dysfunction like insecurity, indecisiveness and lack of internal fire. Contrasted with the fiery personal power that comes from a healthy solar plexus chakra. Whether you are looking to strengthen your solar plexus for purely physical or spiritual reasons, any exercise that targets and strengthens the abdominal muscles can bring fire to your belly.

Plank Pose

    Position yourself on all fours on a yoga mat or other comfortable surface.

    Place your wrists directly under your shoulders and knees under your hips.

    Step both feet back and balance on your toes, coming into a high pushup position.

    Engage your solar plexus by drawing your belly button in toward your spine.

    Stay in this pose for as long as you can, while still maintaining proper form and alignment. Do not let your hips sag toward the floor. Keep your hips and thighs actively engaged.

Bent-Knee Crunches

    Lie on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.

    Place your hands behind your head, fingertips lightly touching the back of your head and your elbows splayed out to either side.

    Press your tailbone into the mat and engage your solar plexus by drawing your abdominal muscles in.

    Raise your head, neck and upper back off the floor using your abdominal muscles.

    Lower your upper body down to the floor and complete 20 to 50 repetitions, depending on your fitness level.

Boat Pose

    Sit on a yoga mat or other comfortable surface.

    Bend your knees and place your feet flat on the floor.

    Engage your solar plexus by drawing your belly button in toward your spine.

    Draw your knees in toward your chest and lift your feet of the floor so the ankles are parallel with the knees.

    Lean back slightly with your torso. If this already feels like an intense exercise, stay there holding on to your shins for support. To increase the intensity of the pose, bring your arms out to either side. To go further, extend your legs fully. Your entire body should be in a wide "V" position.

Qi Gong Solar Plexus Strengthener

    Stand up tall with a straight spine.

    Inhale and let your abdomen fill with air.

    Exhale and place one hand on top of the other in front of the solar plexus, right under the rib cage.

    Press in and up with both hands.

    Continue pressing on the solar plexus, while twisting the upper torso to the right and the hips to the left.

    Practice this exercise for 10 to 30 repetitions.


    • B.K.S. Iyengar, founder of Iyengar yoga, recommends performing Uddiyana Bandha throughout all standing poses to strengthen the solar plexus. To perform Uddiyana Bandha, contract the muscles you would use to stop the flow of urine -- the pelvic floor muscles -- and your abdominal muscles and pull the muscles in and up toward your heart.


    • Speak to your doctor before performing abdominal exercises, especially if you suffer from chronic back pain, ulcers or digestive disorders.

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