Urdhva Mukha Svanasana / Upward-facing dog

The easiest ‘mindless’ thing to do in this posture is dump into your lower back. When done mindfully, not only is the lower back protected but the posture will help build strength in the limbs.

The following cues in this pose will prevent such dumping into the lower back and improve your alignment to build strength:

  • Press the top of your feet firmly into the mat
  • Pull up through your quads
  • Pull in your core (uddiyana bandha) – as always
  • Bring your shoulders back to squeeze an imaginary golf ball between the shoulder blades
  • Think about opening your chest, bending the back in the mid section (thoracic spine) as well as the lower (lumbar spine) – i.e. don’t rely on the lower back for the bend

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