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Yoga Poses Upward Facing Dog Pose

Yoga Poses Upward Facing Dog Pose

Introduction: Upward Facing Dog pose commonly known as Urdhva Mukha Svanasana is a back-bending yoga pose designed to lengthen and strengthen the legs, spine and buttocks, as well as torso, wrists and arms. The pose is an important component of Sun Salutations and can be used as a strength builder.

Type of Level: Falling under the category of beginner level, Upward Facing Doge Pose is practiced to establish basic flexibility and strength.

How to Perform

  • Lie on the stomach with your face-down on the ground, hands next to the ribs and legs extended behind you. Make sure your fingers are pointing forward and legs spreading a few inches apart. Also, the toes of your feet should rest on the floor – do not tuck them
  • Inhale and press your hands firmly on the floor. Straighten the arms and lift your torso, chest and legs off the floor (a few inches only)
  • Keeping the elbows pressed, draw your shoulders onto your back, but do not crunch the neck. If you have a flexible neck, gaze towards the sky otherwise look directly forward keeping your head neutral
  • Keeping the arms & thighs firm and the heart open, deepen the stretch so as to keep your lower back long
  • Hold this pose anywhere between 10-15 breaths. To release, exhale and slowly lower your torso down on the floor. Turn the head to the right side while resting your left ear on the yoga mat. Relax with the arms alongside the body
  • Repeat up to five or six times

Benefits of Upward Facing Dog Pose (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana)

  • Opens the chest, heart, lungs and abdominal cavity
  • Stretches the shoulders and upper back
  • Improves posture
  • Strengthens the shoulders, spine, arms and wrists
  • Relieves fatigue and mild depression
  • Extremely therapeutic for asthma
  • Firms the hips
  • Stimulates the abdominal organs

Best Place to Perform: Yoga poses including the Upward Facing Dog Pose should be performed in a ventilated and sound-proof room. Moreover, the place should be clean and free from dirt. For performing this pose, stick to a clean mat and an even floor. Also, the lights in the room should be soothing to the eyes.

Precautions While Performing Upward Facing Dog Pose

  • Don’t practice the pose if you have back or wrist injuries.
  • Pregnant woman should avoid this pose after her first trimester. This is because the pose can excessively strain the ligaments and lower back
  • Also, avoid performing the Upward Facing Dog pose if you are suffering from headaches and frequent migraines
  • Since most of the body weight rests on the wrists while practicing this pose, people with carpal tunnel syndrome should not perform it
  • If you have any another medical issue, consult your doctor before performing this yoga pose.