It’s that time of the week again! We greet the end of a long, simultaneously exhausting and stimulating week, replete with midterms preparation and early mornings, with a healthy dose of yoga.
And today’s Touch Your Toes Friday pose is…Down-Dog!
This is one of the most basic poses in yoga. At some point in a yoga class, DVD, or podcast, you will enter Down-Dog.
Basically, you just stand with your feet hip-width apart, sink your hands into the ground, straighten your legs, and lift your hips so that your butt points up to where the floor and ceiling meet (provided you’re doing yoga inside, of course!). Check out this image courtesy of Yoga Journal:
Down-Dog strengthens your biceps and increases the range of motion of your legs. Ultimately, this should be a resting pose, but it is a bit challenging at first. Try holding this pose for 1 min. three times and immerse yourself into the experience. Feel your hands sink into the earth and stretch your heels by trying to reach them to the ground.
And of course, BREATHE. Focus your thoughts on your inhales and exhales as you enter this pose. Whenever you feel your mind wandering or entertain thoughts about any discomfort you might experience, just return your attention back to your breath, to how your hands feel as they sink into the ground, and how feet feel as they stretch and flatten towards the floor.
Stronger, more toned shoulders and increased flexibility below the torso? We should all Down-dog it up as much as we can!