Even if your yoga knowledge is not too extensive, you must have some idea about the yoga position downward facing dog pose. This simple yet dynamic member of the highly beneficial dog yoga poses category is often used as an opener for more complicated and demanding yoga asanas. Of course, the yoga position downward facing dog pose can be performed independently too as it has a whole set of physical, mental and emotional benefits that can be obtained by practicing this asana regularly. Yoga beginners can use yoga props such as placing the hands on a yoga block or the seat of a chair if they are unable to perform the yoga position downward facing dog pose comfortably without any additional support.
Health Benefits Of Downward Facing Dog Pose
The downward facing dog pose is known as a gem of a pose for a reason. Prepare to be bowled over by the positive effects of the yoga position downward facing dog pose.
From an acupuncture perspective, the yoga position downward facing dog pose is extremely beneficial because it stimulates the bladder channel in the body. The bladder channel extends from the top of the head right down to the toes and is thus the longest channel in the body. It is considered to be the body’s first line of defense from external disease causing agents. The yoga position downward facing dog pose stimulates and strengthens this first line of defense thus boosting the body’s immunity and keeping the yoga practitioner healthy and disease-free.
A ‘Happy’ Pose
This full-body pose is particularly relaxing and euphoric, and is therapeutic for depression and anxiety.
This classic pose gives you a complete full-body stretch. The yoga position downward facing dog pose particularly stretches and strengthens the arms and legs. Additionally, it also straightens and strengthens the spine, and effectively alleviates back pain.
May Prevent Osteoporosis
The downward facing dog pose can also help to prevent osteoporosis by strengthening the bones.
Things To Keep In Mind
Special care must be taken by individuals who are suffering from headache or high blood pressure. It would be best to consult a professional yoga teacher who can suggest suitable modifications to the yoga position downward facing dog pose. Women in the latter term of their pregnancy and individuals suffering from carpel tunnel syndrome and diarrhea should refrain from attempting the yoga position downward facing dog pose.
How To Perform Downward Facing Dog Yoga Pose
This simple set of instructions will guide you through the downward facing dog pose sequence:
1. Position yourself on your hands and knees. Make sure that your hands are directly below your shoulders, and your knees are positioned directly below the hips.
2. Take a deep breath, and as you inhale, tuck your toes in under your heels.
3. As you exhale, slowly lift your hips upwards. Make sure that your hands stay firmly positioned on the yoga mat. Assume an upside down ‘V’ position, or a downward facing dog position.
4. Try to keep your heels firmly pressed against the yoga mat. However, as a beginner you can allow your heels to lift up off the floor a little.
5. Hold the position for as long as possible, or for at least five deep breaths if you are a beginner.