Upward-facing dog pose: Understand clearly to avoid confusion

Upside down dog pose is a pose that works to stretch the chest and abdominal muscles, while helping to strengthen the shoulders, triceps, forearms, and lower back.

Upward Facing Dog, whose Sanskrit name is Urdhva Mukha Svanasana. This is a yoga pose related to the cobra pose. Due to their very similar shape, these two poses are easy to confuse. However, according to many yogis, compared to the cobra pose, the face-up dog pose will have a much higher difficulty.

Upward facing dog is part of a series of sun salutations. You will move from a push-up position (Chaturanga) to a face-up position and then to a downward-facing dog pose. In this series of exercises, the face-up dog move will act as a transition. However, do not do that, but you practice in a hurry and superficially because if you practice with the wrong posture, you will not achieve the highest efficiency. Over time, it can even lead to shoulder injuries.

The characteristic of the face-up dog pose that distinguishes it from the cobra pose is that when you do it, you’ll lean back with your hips, thighs, and knees lifted off the floor and only the palms and tops of your feet (and possibly shins) touches the floor to support the body’s weight. Palms should be in line with shoulders, shoulder blades should be pressed in, chest open and eyes looking forward.

Benefits of the face-up dog pose

Upside down dog pose

The face-up dog movement is not only good for the back and spine in particular, but also good for health in general

The face-up dog is a powerful backbend that stretches the abdomen, chest, shoulders, and strengthens the arms and spine. If you do a job that requires sitting for a long time like an office or driving a car, most of the sitting position will be with the shoulders slightly forward, the neck down, relaxing the abdominal muscles and lower back.

Practicing the face-up dog pose regularly will help you automatically correct your sitting position. Thereby, helping to reduce the risk of low back pain. Not only that, it also helps to soothe the chest and shoulders by expanding these parts.

Instructions for performing the face-up dog pose

  • From 4-limb position, exhale, slowly lower yourself to the floor
  • When the body hits the ground, inhale, straighten the arms, and at the same time, change the position of the legs, from the toes touching the floor to placing the instep of the foot facing the floor. Don’t let your thighs touch the floor during the move
  • Open your chest toward the ceiling as you straighten your arms. The eyes look up but it is not necessary to tilt the head back
  • Keep your legs still and drop your hips to the floor. Right now, palms and feet are the only things that touch the floor
  • Keep your shoulders in line with your wrists, your neck doesn’t stretch too much
  • Hold the pose for about 30 seconds, then slowly exhale and move into downward facing dog
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Note when performing the action

Upside down dog pose

If your thighs are on the floor, you are doing the cobra pose, not the downward facing dog pose

If you regularly practice the series of sun salutations, you will have to practice the face-up dog pose several times. Therefore, when performing, you should note a few things to perform the movement effectively:

  • Don’t relax your shoulders and back when doing the face-up dog move. You’ll see this when your neck falls between your shoulders and your shoulders are close to your ears.
  • Don’t let your thighs touch the ground. Try to keep your legs close together, using your palms and insteps to lift your thighs off the mat.
  • In the face-up dog pose, the neck needs to form a half-U with the spine. Therefore, you should avoid tilting your neck too deeply, and instead look straight ahead so that your ears are in line with your shoulders.

Variations of the face-up dog movement

Like other yoga poses, you can modify the face-up dog pose to make the pose easier:

  • When you first start exercising, you can let your thighs touch the floor. However, you need to practice regularly to try to lift your thighs off the floor. Because if your thighs are on the floor, you are doing the cobra pose, not the downward facing dog pose.
  • During the exercise, practice slowly to adjust the posture. Because the goal when practicing is that you need to have enough stamina and endurance to hold the pose for a few breaths, not successfully perform it for a few seconds.
  • To avoid stress on your shoulders and wrists, you should try to practice proper posture. For pregnant women, you need to avoid doing it after the first trimester. In addition, this pose is also not recommended for people with back or wrist injuries or health problems such as carpal tunnel.

Above is some useful information about the face-up dog movement in yoga. If you want to try this pose and are curious about other movements, please download easyhealthylive.com immediately to your device for more exercises or connect with our professional yoga teacher for guidance. details on how to do it.

Reference source

How to Do Upward Facing Dog (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana) in Yoga https://www.verywellfit.com/upward-facing-dog-urdhva-mukha-svanasana-3567130 Access date: January 29, 2021

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