Urdhva-Mukha Svanasana is known as ‘Upward Facing Dog’. In Sanskrit, ‘urdhva’ denotes upward, ‘mukha’ denotes face and ‘svana’ denotes dog. Experts suggest that this asana can strengthen your spine, wrists, arms, shoulders, abdomen and lungs and can also make them flexible. ‘Upward Facing Dog’ pose can help in the treatment of slipped disks by preventing lower back vertebrae getting squeezed into the inter-vertebral cartilage. In short, Urdhva-Mukha Svanasana can energize your entire body through improved blood circulation, toning and strengthening your organs and system.
How to Practice Urdhva-Mukha Svanasana?
- You can lie in prone position (face down).
- Stretch your legs back with big toes close to each other.
- Bend your elbows.Â Place your hands shoulder-width apart from each other on the floor. Spread your fingers in such a way that your middle fingers of both hands face directly forward.
- Push your chest up.
- You can now elevate your thighs and hips off the ground while balancing your weight on the tips of your feet. At this position, you may take a look at your feet. Your feet should be at hip-distance apart.
- Keep your arms straight. You can now relax from your shoulders down and gently bend your shoulders back.
- Lift your sternum.
- Look towards the sky and relax.
- Maintain your posture for 5-10 breaths.
- Return back to your to prone position.
Benefits of Urdhva-Mukha Svanasana
- It improves digestion ability
- Decreases aging signs from the neck and face
- It tones up the legs and arms
- It stretches the spine, thus offering physical and mental relaxation
It is advisable to do Upward Facing Dog under proper guidance of an expert so that you can properly learn movement of your coccyx. Learning this movement is essential so that you do not damage the vertebrae of your lower back while practicing this asana.