Downward Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

What is Downward Dog Pose?

Downward Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana) is the yoga posture of intermediate level in which body is moved in an upward side V shape position. Downward Dog Pose get its name from Man’s best friend bending position. In fact its sanskrit original name means Half facing Dog posture. It is an essential part of the Surya namaskar or sun salutations. Downward dog not only stretches the spine but also hamstrings hands and legs. It warmth the whole body, which produce energy in body. Downward facing of the downward dog posture make the blood flow toward the head and brain, which soothe the nervous system and enhance the memory of the user.

Downward Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)


How to do Downward Dog Pose

  • First lie down on floor mattress on your stomach and relax for some time. Place your hands in straight direction.
  • You will now take the body into table posture by standing like an animal. Move your hands toward the stomach and after reaching the chest try to push upward, meanwhile move your legs also toward stomach and then push upward parallel to arms.
  • Now Push your lower body portion (Buttocks) in upward position while hands remain attach to the ground. Let your palms touched to the ground and knees will go in opposite direction. In the end your lower body will look a /\-Shape while your palms are still touching ground.
  • Adjust your feet during 3rd step, as it may soar if you continue to stay in this pose for 3-4 min. Try to let your heels touch the ground, because it will only increase the stretching and produce strain on there. If you feel that your knees are stressed, then correct your posture and make your knees goes right under your hips.
  • Stay for at least 3-4 minutes and after that slowly came to the table posture, after remaining it in for 1 minute, lie on your stomach and relax for 2 min.

Downward Dog Tips

There are two main points which may face difficulty in your body, one is shoulders and another is feet. Therefore try to adjust them time by time, also look that you in correct way or position. For the beginner, they can feel sprain in the legs when doing this posture, they can bend one leg’s knee while maintaining the straightness of the another leg knee and then change side with another leg. After some time of practice you will find it easy to perform the straightness in both legs. If you are in pregnancy last stage or have a back injury recently, then please consult your physician before performing this posture.

Benefits of Adho Mukha Svanasana

  • Regular practice of downward dog reduces the back pain. As it stretches the spine, therefore practitioner got the nervous system benefit from downward dog.
  • Downward dog strengthen hand, legs, spine, shoulder and other body parts. But for beginners, we advice that don’t try to push your limit, if it is painful for your body.
  • Downward dog posture regulates the blood circulation which improves the heart condition hence reducing chances of heart related problem and blood pressure.
  • It rejuvenates the body and fills it with energy due to its stretching of spine and back portion of body.
  • It helps in toning of the palms and feet. It not only makes muscle of lap grow stronger but the opposite side of lap or Hamstring also strengthens when it is practiced for long time.
  • Downward dog helps the practitioner in gaining a better digestive system by pressing the digestive organs like kidney, liver and intestines.


Downward dog focus on spine, thighs, stomach areas, therefore women with late-term pregnancy or those who have chronic back or shoulder injuries must avoid it. Those who have high blood pressure or any infection related to Ear or nose must also try not to practice it.

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