Upward Facing Dog
Urdhva Mukha Svanasana
OORD-vah moo-khah SHVAH-NAH-sah-nah
Strengthens spine and arms, stretches torso
Improves circulation in pelvis
Energizes body and mind
How to perform upward facing dog
- Lie on your stomach. Separate your feet hip-width apart. Place your hands next to your lower ribs and spread your fingers. Rest your forehead on the floor.
- Push into your hands and lift your head, torso and legs from the floor with an inhale. Roll your shoulders down your back and gaze forward.
- Hold the pose and take slow, deep breaths.
- Lower with an exhale.
- Bring feet hip-width apart
- Bend elbows slightly
- Draw shoulders away from ears
- Gaze forward
- Lift thighs from floor
- Face elbow creases forward
Avoid this pose if you have back or wrist injury.
More yoga poses to discover
Upward facing dog (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana in Sanskrit) is a beginner yoga pose that belongs to the back bends categories. This asana targets forearms and spine and triceps and wrists and also involves abs and glutes & hip flexors and hamstrings and shoulders muscles. Upward facing dog stretches and strengthens legs, opens chest; rejuvenates abdominal organs and also reduces fatigue, increases energy. Refer to the illustration and instructions above for how to perform this posture correctly. Discover more yoga asanas and yogic breathing exercises in our free yoga pose directory.
Our exercise illustrations represent original artwork registered with and protected by the U.S. Copyright Office. Unauthorized use violators will be prosecuted. More details.