I wonder how this practice can contribute to insight especially when prostration is done mechanically (as practiced around Buddhist pagodas in Birma; Sri Lanka and Thailand)?
Prostrations is done to Revere.
Reverence is an act of merit->Merit brings happiness->Happiness brings Tranquility (Samadhi)->Samadhi brings Insight.
Mind influences the Body, but the body also influences the mind.We can feel happy and smile or we can smile then feel happy.The body has a huge impact on the mind.When we stand up straight we tend to feel more confident.
It is possible to do prostration mechanically but it will leave an imprint in your mind and psyche to not behave in a way that shows irreverence.For example,I had a habit of saying a prayer mechanically before dinner,and even when i went to someone else's house and was mindless for most of the day by the time it was dinner time i'd kind of snap out of it and became mindful of the food and say a quick prayer for it.So it's like a force of habit.In this case a good habit.