Yoga Practice 7

Adho Mukha Svanasana

Downward-facing dog is one of the most popular poses you’ll see in class and for many great reasons!  It is considered an “inversion” because the head is lower than the heart and therefore raises the heart rate.  You stretch the hamstrings, the back, and even the ankles!


To enter Downward Dog:

  1. Begin in a table top position, with the hands under the shoulders and fingers spread wide.  The knees are stacked under the hip bones, hip bone distance apart.
  2. Tuck the toes under, walk the hands out about one hand print.  Press the weight into the fingertips and palm, and pull the belly into the spine.
  3. On an exhale, lift the tailbone up and back.  Try to make a straight line from the tips of the fingers to the base of the spine, the tailbone.  Pedal the feet out, bend one at a time, maybe lift one leg then the other.  Move a little to help loosen the muscles.
  4. Lower the heels to the ground, and bend the knees and come on the tippy toes if you have tight hamstrings.
  5. Drop the crown of the head, and let the head and neck relax.  The gaze and heart reach toward the feet.
  6. Aim to stay in this position for 5-10 deep breaths.
  7. Rest in Child’s pose (Balasana in Yoga Practice 1).


Adho Mukha Svanasana helps to reduce headaches, stress, and fatigue!

Try other exercises to heal stress and pain with my Healing Yoga E-book:




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