Downward Dog

If you’ve never done yoga before, you’ve probably still heard of Downward Dog. It’s one of the first yoga poses that every beginner will learn and is used in almost every yoga workout. You might also hear the dog pose called by its Sanskrit name, Adho Mukha Śvānāsana, but the English name is much more common.


In Downward-facing dog, our body should form an inverted V with the palms of our hands and our feet pressing down as our hips move up.  You want your feet to eventually rest flat on the ground keeping the spine straight and not rounded. As with every asana, be sure not to force it.  In downward dog, a slight bend of the knees will keep the spine extended and straight.  Remember, keep the ego off the yoga mat – it’s okay to bend your knees!


Benefits of Downward Dog


  • Builds upper body strength
  • Increases our flexibility
  • Strengthens bones
  • Strengthens wrists and shoulders
  • Relieves stress