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Upward Bow or Wheel Pose

Urdhva Dhanurasana

hp_219_UrdhvaDhanurasana_248.jpg

(OORD-vah don-your-AHS-anna)
urdhva = upward
dhanu = bow

Step by Step

Lie supine on the floor. Bend your knees and set your feet on the floor, heels as close to the sitting bones as possible. Bend your elbows and spread your palms on the floor beside your head, forearms relatively perpendicular to the floor, fingers pointing toward your shoulders.

Pressing your inner feet actively into the floor, exhale and push your tailbone up toward the pubis, firming (but not hardening) the buttocks, and lift the buttocks off the floor. Keep your thighs and inner feet parallel. Take 2 or 3 breaths. Then firmly press the inner hands into the floor and your shoulder blades against the back and lift up onto the crown of your head. Keep your arms parallel. Take 2 or 3 breaths.

Press your feet and hands into the floor, tailbone and shoulder blades against your back, and with an exhalation, lift your head off the floor and straighten your arms. Turn the upper thighs slightly inward and firm the outer thighs. Narrow the hip points and lengthen the tailbone toward the backs of the knees, lifting the pubis toward the navel.

Turn the upper arms outward but keep the weight on the bases of the index fingers. Spread the shoulder blades across the back and let the head hang, or lift it slightly to look down at the floor.

Stay in the pose anywhere from 5 to 10 seconds or more, breathing easily. Repeat anywhere from 3 to 10 times.


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Reader Comments

Djg

Supposed to inhale into back bends? Who told you that? Ofcourse you can inhale. You can also exhale, or keep breathing. Better to be able to breathe in different ways to enable more freedom when going deeper into exploration of postures.

Jen

I thought you were supposed to inhale into back bend poses?

Essa

I agree with Maya.I love this pose.It will relieve my backache with just 3 times.

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