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Why You Shouldn’t Hug Your Knees Into Your Chest After a Backbend Practice

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So you’re wrapping up a big, juicy backbend practice, and you just finished your last Urdhva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow Pose). You feel good. And you know what would make you feel even better? Rewarding yourself by hugging your knees into your chest.

Well, not so fast.

On Saturday, in a sunlit classroom nestled amid the redwoods at the yoga retreat center 1440 Multiversity for Yoga Journal’s event, The Practice, master teachers Colleen Saidman Yee and Rodney Yee were leading a 90-minute backbend sequence.

Watch also Colleen Saidman Yee on How to Replan Your Class on the Fly

Toward the end of the practice, once students had finished their Bridge and Upward Bow Poses, they wanted to do just that: Give themselves a hug. Here, Colleen and Rodney share why forward bending after a long series of backbends may be harmful to your spine, along with what you should do instead for optimal back health.

Watch also Rodney Yee’s Energy-Boosting Breathwork Is Better Than Caffeine

Want to learn more? Join Colleen for Yoga for Inner Peace, 3-month course that will help you release your emotions and get rid of that nagging feeling that you are not enough (click here to sign up). Or join Rodney for his Master Class: Pranayama through Urban Zen Integrative Therapy, an intensive workshop that will explore the fundamentals of breathwork like you never have before (click here to sign up).