Downward Facing Dog might be the most recognized yoga pose of them all. It is a foundational pose for all types of yoga that is great for decompressing the spine, and stretching out your body from your shoulders to your hamstrings. Have you ever felt like it was harder to do than it looks? Here’s 3 tips on how to start getting more out of your downward dog.
My feet can’t touch the floor
When starting out, you might find that your hamstrings and calves feel tight as you try to press the heels of your feet to the mat. Rather than trying to force your legs straight or force your feet into the ground, try bending your knees slightly and try to get a proper feel of the pose without sacrificing form. As you improve your flexibility over time, focus on lifting your hips to the ceiling as you(your) try to press your heels down, but stop as soon as you feel your back is starting to round.
My neck is sore
In order to keep your spine aligned, you will want to avoid shrugging your shoulders upwards, and feel as if your shoulders are being drawn away from your ears. This way you’ll avoid extra pressure on your neck while keeping your back straight.
My wrists hurt
Keep your arms shoulder width apart, feet hip width apart. Spread your fingers wide, and press down into the mat. Rotate your arms externally so that your elbows face back towards the room, as you engage your shoulders. This way you should feel a better distribution of weight throughout your body rather than placing all of the pressure on your wrists.