Downward Dog Pose

Build full body strength and stamina.  Just hold the pose for a few minutes and observe the effects.

Steps:

  1. Kneel on the floor, keeping hip-width distance between your knees. Incline forward placing the hands on the floor right under the shoulders. Keep thighs and arms perpendicular to the floor. Align the hands in line with the knees, shoulders aligned to the wrists.

  2. Press the hands into the ground. Curl the toes, exhale and gently lift the hips taking the knees away from the floor, face downward. Keep the knees and elbows bent for a while. Take 3 breaths.

  3. Straighten both the elbow and knees, heels touching the floor, ears touching the inner arms. Look at the navel. You will feel an intense stretch in the back muscles of your legs. This is the final position. Remain in this position for as long as you feel comfortable. Take deep breaths.

  4. To come back lift the head, bend the knees and gently sit on the floor/mat. Take slow and long breaths.

Benefits:

  1. Adho Mukha Svanasana strengthens core, nerves, muscles of the arms, legs, ankles and back; expands the chest. Increase height of a growing body. Tones the muscles of the abdomen, arms, shoulder, back, thighs and calves.

  2. Improves blood circulation between shoulder blades and spine. Strengthens the lungs hence beneficial for the respiratory system, improves digestion, energize and relax the body, removes fatigue calms the mind.

  3. Practicing this asana removes stiffness in the shoulders.

Contraindications:​
 
  1. Carpal tunnel syndrome

  2. Weak or injured shoulder or heel

  3. Any kind of inflammation of eyes and ears

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