- Lie on your back and bend your knees
- Place your feet close to the buttocks
- Place your hands under the shoulders, fingers pointing forward
- Lift the hips, chest and head up to come off the floor and arch the back
- Breathe for 5-10 breaths
- Exhale and lower down
Start by lying down on your back. Bend the knees and place the feet close to the buttocks, hip distance apart. Feet are parallel to each other. Place your hands under your shoulders, fingers spread apart and pointing forward towards the feet. The hands can be apart a little wider than shoulder distance in the beginning, however as you progress in your practice keep the palms at shoulder distance. Press the feet firmly into the floor, lift the hips, back, chest and head up. Extend the hips up as high as possible, creating a deep arch in the back. Turn the thighs slightly inward, to protect the back from compression. Keep the knees as well as the elbows in their respective position and do not allow them to roll to the side. Ensure that the arms are straight, by keeping the armpits right above the wrists. Keep pressing the feet firmly into the ground, bringing the weight forward towards the hands and pressing the chest towards the back wall. This will help to extend the entire spine. Stay in the pose and maintain a steady breath. Come down on an exhalation.
As a variation to this posture you can lift one of your legs up into the air, keeping the knee straight and extending the leg outward. Repeat on the other side. Another variation is lifting one of your arms up towards the hip bone, and then repeat on the other side.
One of the benefits of this posture is that it opens the entire front side of the body. It stretches the abdomen, the chest, the arms and the thighs. It strengthens the legs, the buttocks, the arms and the back.
The contraindications for this pose are back and neck injuries, high blood pressure, carpal tunnel syndrome (places too much pressure on the wrists), and heart problems. You can opt for bridge pose as an alternative
- Strengthens the back, arms, legs
- Stretches the abdomen and chest
- Back and neck injuries / High blood pressure / Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Tones Hamstrings
- Tones gluteus maximus
- Tones triceps
- Stretches rectus abdominis
- Stretches psoas major