ALL SECTIONS

Now Reading
Stretching Out by Getting Down

ALL SECTIONS

ALL SECTIONS

— May 7, 2018

Stretching Out by Getting Down

  • This is one of those poses that screams "yoga," even among people who would never dream of taking a class. And there are good reasons to do Down Dog.
pocket

Pose: Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

Why You Should Do It: This is one of those poses that screams “yoga,” even among people who would never dream of taking a class. And there are good reasons to do Down Dog,

which:

» Stretches the spine as well as the arches, calves, hamstrings, hands, and shoulders.

» Strengthens the arms and legs. » Aids digestion.

» Helps relieve headache and menstrual discomfort.

How to Do It: Kneel down on all fours, placing hands under shoulders, index fingers parallel to each other, and knees under hips. Curl your toes under and:

» Exhale, lifting your knees and buttocks upward. Spread your fingers.

» Press your chest towards your thighs and bring your head between your arms; draw your shoulder blades in and towards your tailbone. Don’t let your head hang.

» Move your heels towards the floor. (They may not reach the floor—don’t worry.) Straighten your legs without locking your knees; your thighs should be rotated slightly inward.

» Set your gaze at either between your feet or your navel.

Note: Keep your core engaged and don’t sink into your shoulders. It’s more important to maintain a straight line from the wrists to the hips than from the hips to the heels.

Variations: If this pose poses problems, try placing your hands on either blocks or the seat of a chair.

Be Careful If: Avoid Down Dog if you have carpal tunnel syndrome or a shoulder injury, or if you are pregnant and late in your term.

© Copyright 2020 Discover Life Magazine. All rights reserved.