Yoga for the Beginner

Yoga Health Benefits of Upward Facing Dog

June 30th, 2011  |  Published in Featured, Yoga Benefits, Yoga Health

Yoga For The Beginner

yoga health benefits of the upward facing dog

Yoga Health Benefits

The Yoga Health Benefits of the Upward Facing Dog (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana part of the sun salutation poses) are so wonderful because it is such a simple and easy position so the rewards are huge. Upward facing dog is very simple and very good for beginners of yoga.

The upward facing dog is a simple back bend that:

  • strengthens the spine, arms, wrists, abdomen, shoulders, legs, particularly the hamstrings, calves and arches
  • increases the flexibility of the spine
  • expands your breathing capacity while increasing circulation to the pelvic area
  • improves digestion and reinvigorates the whole body
  • relieves insomnia, headache, back pain, fatigue, symptoms of menopause and menstrual discomfort
  • good prevention measure for osteoporosis

Some contraindications (reasons why you should not do upward facing dog) are:

  • Diarrhea
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Pregnancy
  • High Blood Pressure

So how can the upward facing dog improve your health?

You will begin to notice the effects of the the upward facing dog almost immediately. While in the pose you can feel your spine lengthening which really opens up the blood flow in your entire body but especially in your pelvic region.  You will find that your breathing is must easier.  The air flows into your lungs so much more easily and you will exhale with greater ease. Your arms will stretch and feel stronger with their ability to hold your body up.  If you are experience pain in your abdomen or pelvic region you will feel that area strengthen and the pain will be less.

During the day this is a very nice, simple position to try especially if you have been sitting at a desk all day.  Once or twice during the day you can get out of your desk chair and do a few sun salutations which include the upward facing dog, the cobra, the side inclined plane, the extended side angle, and the triangle post.  These are excellent poses for stretching your shoulders, spine and aiding in digestion.  The warrior 1 pose will also help you to open up your lungs and enhance deep breathing along with relieving stiffness in your spine which you will get sitting in the office at your desk all day.

The yoga health benefits of the upward facing dog are excellent for beginners especially those who may work in an office all day and find that they are beginning to hunch from sitting at the computer all day.  Lengthen your spine, improve your posture and feel better and healthier during your day.

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