How To Do Downward Dog Yoga Pose


How Do We Actually Do A Downward Facing Dog – Ah doh Moo Kuh Shvan ahs uh nuh.

Downward Dog is one of the most familiar yoga poses. Its a posture that you will probably do most often within a Yoga class.

DD is a standing yoga pose but with a mild inversion (head lower than your heart) that helps to build strength while at the same time stretching the entire body. This posture is named after the way dogs naturally stretch their entire bodies. You can also hear is called Down Dog, Downward Dog or Just Dog Pose.

Begin with your hands and knees on the floor in table top pose. Make sure to align you wrists correctly, fingers spread and pointing forwards towards the front edge of your mat. Your hands should be directly under your shoulders and your knees directly under your hips. The middle finger is a big marker to correct hand placement within a practice – it should point to the front of the mat and be directly in line with the middle of the wrist.

Spread your fingers wide and press firmly into the palms. Make sure the weight is spread evenly through the hands.

Slowly tuck your toes underneath you in preparation for lifting. Breath in fully and peel your knees off the mat gently raising your pelvis upwards towards the ceiling. Slowly straighten the legs, don’t worry if you can’t fully straighten them, keep a slightly bend through the knees if it helps. Imagine your hips are lengthening and your arms are extending. Begin to form the shape of an inverted V with your body.

Once your feet are in place resist the temptation to walk them closer to your hands, this will shorten the posture and can create tension in the spine.

Allow your head to drop, nod the head yes and no a few times to release tension in the neck area. Allow the head to relax. Gaze towards your feet.  Rotate your arms slightly so your elbow crease faces your thumbs, try not to lock your elbows.

Nudge your belly button inwards and upwards to create length in your lower back. Breath deeply.

To release from Downward Dog exhale and gently bend your knees to come back down onto your mat. Rest here for a moment, or if you prefer sit back into Childs Pose.

Give it a try. Stick with it. Eventually Your Dog will become your best friend.

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