Easy Yoga Poses for Beginners

Adho Mukha Svanasana Poses

Meaning of Adho Mukha Svanasana Pose

Adho Mukha Svanasana Pose is a foundational yoga asana that requires flexibility and upper body strength. In this asana, the body forms an inverted “V” with the feet and hands pressing into the ground and the hips pushing to the sky. As well as a range of physical benefits, it is believed to calm the mind while energizing and rejuvenating the body.

The name comes from the Sanskrit adhas, meaning “down”, mukha, meaning “face”, svana, meaning “dog” and asana, meaning “pose”. The common English name is downward-facing dog pose, or simply downward dog or down dog. Easy Yoga Poses for Beginners is very important to learn so not to injure one’s self.

Mastering Adho Mukha Svanasana Pose

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Downward-Facing Dog

There are 4 Steps to Master this pose.

Find stability in your hands and feet and a more extended spine as you move step by step into Adho Mukha Svanasana.


This will clear stiffness in your shoulders, lengthen and straighten your legs and help to create arches in your feet and strengthening your ankles.


Step 1)

Get onto your hands and knees, with your hands shoulder-width apart and your knees hip-width apart. Press the inner triads of both hands firmly into the mat. Turn the elbows toward each other and align your shoulders over your wrists.


Your knees should be behind your sitting bones to maximize length in your torso and spine when you move into the Downward Dog Position. (Also see Cow Pose).

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Cat Tilt Pose

Step 2)

Take a few breaths, arch and round your spine, simultaneously moving your head and tail like you do in Cat-Cow Pose.

Do this a few times to loosen and slowly stretch your torso, looking toward the ceiling and down as you arch your spine up and down.

Step 3)

From a cat tilt, curl your toes under. On an exhalation, slowly lift your knees off the floor bringing them inline with your ankles. Keep your knees bent and stretch your arms intensely to lengthen your torso.

Press the mat away from you and open your upper body, arm pit, chest area. Lift your sitting bones to tilt the top of your pelvis forward and maintain the natural curves of your spine.

Step 4)

If you’re moving deeper into the pose, slowly straighten both legs and walk your feet forward a little. Your sitting bones should be close to centered between your wrists and ankles.

Make sure your lower back doesn’t round and that you can still maintain the lift of your sitting bones and the curves of your spine.

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Downward Dog Pose

Extend your arms fully and keep your lower ribs moving toward your spine to avoid low back overarching and compression.

Descend your heels even more as you engage your quadriceps. Maintain Mula Bandha and breathe freely through your nose.

Stay for around 25 breaths before coming down to rest in Balsana (child pose).

Spend Time Warming Up for Adho Mukha Avanasana

Use Caution, Hamstrings Can Get Injured if You’re Not Carefull

If your hamstrings are stiff and you try to get your heels to reach the floor, your Downward Facing Dog will be bunched up, with too little distance between your hands and feet. 

This can round and put pressure on your lower back. Instead, spend extra time warming up in reclining hand to big toe pose. to lengthen your hamstrings safely, then practice Down Dog with bent knees. 

Keep your hands straight and flat on the floor to avoid tension in your shoulders, neck and carpel tunnel area.


If You Have Limited Mobility 

You Can Still Do These Poses if You Have Bad Knees or Shoulder Pain

Everyone is unique, we’re not all created the same, you can do these poses on your own terms. Traditional version of Downward-Facing Dog can be challenging for many of us.

Exploring the following variations on Downward-Facing Dog enables you to experience similar shapes, actions and benefits as the traditional version while respecting your individual needs.

Chair Downward-Facing Dog
Chair Downward-Facing Dog


It Helps to Have a Chair to Hold Onto if You Have Mobility Issues

This simple improvision helps illiminate future discomfort, also try putting blocks under your heels for more lengthening stretches, if you find it uncomfortable, don’t use them.

Another way that may help is, actually sitting on the chair, stretch your legs out, arms high and bend slightly toward your feet, your body will let you know your limitations.

Downward-Facing-Dog-Sitting on a Chair


You don’t have to use the traditional poses, exercise on your terms

Here’s a short video showing you 5 different ways to exercise mastering Adho Mukha Svanasana Poses. For more information on poses, here’s a video.

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Also, if you’d like to check out meditation for beginners, feel free. If you’d like to leave a comment, I’d appreciate it as your opinions are important to me.

Thank you for stopping by and I whish you all the best,


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