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The 5 Step Checklist for the Downward Dog

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Ist it amusing how you develop connections with yoga postures? Downward Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana) and that I have a connection that has evolved; we’ve divided and made up, and been best friends. I like to think that we’ve settled into an intimacy today. We understand each other.

Read on for a five-step checklist which you can use to find your best expression of this particular pose if yore looking to have a better look at your connection with Downward Dog.

1. Are My Hands Planted Firmly on the Mat?

Start in the ground (or mat) up. But in life, we need a foundation. The same is true in our asana practice. Half of your weight in Downward Dog is dispersed into your hands, so be sure you are fully harnessing this service.

Spread your fingers wide and press into space beneath your pointer finger. This is not merely a cue; is also about vitality. Imagine tendrils sprouting forming roots which are connecting with the Earth and the Earth.

2. Are My Shoulders Stabilized?

You will hear a lot of cues that are different from various instructors on shoulders from Downward Dog. Ve heard and read many pieces of information that I determine what works for me and finally left with no option but to experiment with my own body.

Once my hands are planted, I roll up my shoulders out. This is a sense that takes some time to master. Imagine that somebody is placing their hands and drawing on on their hands. This provides my shoulders with a sense of strength and firmness to encourage me in this position.

3. Are My Hips Drawing Away From My Shoulders?

As a yoga teacher, ve noticed that many students appear to think that Down Town is about getting your feet flat on the floor. Id found that for lots of my students, and my entire body, it draws their attention away from the spot of this pose: the gorgeous spine while that will provide you a nice calf stretch.

Downward Dog is a spine extender. When your shoulders are drawn from by your buttocks, you will create space and length on your backbone for prana, life force energy, to flow. Concentrate on these hips!

4. Are My Knees Bent?

This is one of these cues that everyone resists mentally until they attempt it physically. I think we then attempt to recreate that on the mat and many people hold a picture in our mind of what Downward Dog is supposed to look like.

For a lot of folks, practicing Down Dog with legs can tug on the spine via the hamstrings. I dot know about you, but I enjoy my lower spine and I need to keep it happy. Bending the knees enables me to focus on spine elongation. When my knees are bent, I feel able to draw my buttocks. Trust me. Give it a try and you may never return!

5. Are My Feet Comfortable and Fluid?

I invite you to release the picture of the feet. I used to work so hard to receive my heels and they did arrive. But at the same time, I had a ton of lower spine and hip pain.

I let my heels to stay off the mat and that I keep my feet comfortable. I also prefer to move just a bit therefore one knee profoundly bends and allows the heel of the foot to touch the ground. This can be called walking your dog instead of forcing your feet into an idealized picture, let fluidity to flow through your toes and heels and try being playful here.

When practicing Downward Dog or any yoga position, always adhere to the principle of non-harming or ahimsa. I adore Down Dog! That extension is necessary and is assisted me to recover from a pinched nerve in my upper back. I have as much admiration for enjoying and this pose mixing it up for a flow with Plank and some Child pose.

With this checklist, I expect that you will find your ideal expression of Adho Mukha Svanasana well.

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If you enjoyed this 5 Step Checklist for the Downward Dog or have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment below!

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