Wednesday 4 April 2012

Bow Pose (Dhanurasana)

The last of the of spine strengthening series postures works on the entire spine. Lying on the belly, bend the knees, reach back and grab the outside of each foot, two inches below the toes.
Keep the knees and feet as close together as possible and make sure that the wrists have not twisted downwards. If the set up of Bow Pose alone is uncomfortable for you, remember, be patient!
Inhale deeply to simultaneously kick back into the hands, lifting the thighs and upper body off the floor. For more strength, push the hips and pelvis into the floor before lifting the legs up and back.
Release the shoulders back as the torso keeps lifting and roll the body weight forward to balance on the center of the abdomen.
Use inner thigh strength to make sure the knees don’t splay out too wide – keep the knees and feet six inches apart. If needed, refrain from kicking the legs up too high.
Hold for 20 seconds, 80-20 breathing. Slowly lower the torso and legs to the floor, Savasana.


Always grab right below the toes, no grip on the ankle or shin.
Remember, this posture is about kicking
Often students will kick first and look up second. Try to synchronize bringing your head back and the kick at the same time.
Always look up in the pose, this helps to complete the benefit for the cervical spine (neck) and helps to tone the muscles surrounding the eyes while stretching the ocular nerve.

Tips from the Pros

If one foot is higher than the other, instead of thinking to kick harder with that foot, think kick toward the corner of the ceiling. – Bikram
Manifest tension in the grip, but not the arm – Craig.
80/20 breathing is essential because it directly effects the compression of the spine. - Craig
Grab the feet not the ankle. - Craig


  •     Erector Spinae muscle
  •     Deep spinal muscles
  •     Deltoids
  •     Rhomboids
  •     Trapezius Muscles
  •     Latissmus Dorsi


  •     Entire front side of the body
  •     Shoulder joints
  •     Spinal column


  •     Digestive system
  •     Kidneys
  •     Liver
  •     Thymus
  •     Lymph glands in neck and endocrine glands.


  •     Increases circulation to the heart and lungs
  •     Improves breathing by extending and opening the diaphragm and chest
  •     Increases circulation to the spine, helping to revitalize the spinal nerves
  •     Tones the abdomen, improves digestion and relieves constipation
  •     Helps to regulate the ovaries and prostate gland
  •     Helps to relieve rheumatism, arthritis, lumbago and cervical spondylosis
  •     Relieves menstrual problems
  •     Stimulation of the thymus gland helps to regulate the cycle of eating, making bow good for eating disorders
  •     Helps to correct bad posture
  •     Alleviates fatigue
  •     Good for anorexia and bulimia
  •     Improves the function of the kidneys, liver and spleen
  •     Good for bronchitis
  •     Strengthens concentration and determination
  •     Develops freedom of expression
  •     Relieves stress associated with taking too much responsibility for others

1 comment:

Unknown said...

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