Upward Plank Pose

Definition - What does Upward Plank Pose mean?

Upward plank pose (also known as reverse plank) is an arm balancing posture that is empowering, energizing and strengthening. Much effort is required from both of the legs and core muscles in order to maintain this pose.

Begin in staff pose then place the hands behind the body, pressing down to lift the hips and buttocks off of the mat. The body should be one long line from head to feet, with heels pressed firmly into the mat.

Upward plank pose is also known as purvottanasana in Sanskrit.

Yogapedia explains Upward Plank Pose

For a deeper expression of the pose, the head can be dropped back so that the chin points to the sky. Yogis may further challenge their strength by lifting one leg at a time, alternating back and forth.

Three hand positions are used with inclined plane:

  • Fingers pointing toward the feet stretches the wrists.
  • Fingers pointing away from the feet offers a deeper chest stretch.
  • Fingers pointing slightly outward eases the strain on the wrists and shoulders.

In addition to increased flexibility, upward plank pose has these benefits:

  • Energizes the body and mind
  • Stimulates the nervous system
  • Helps lengthen the spine and improve posture
  • Strengthens the heart and lungs
  • Strengthens the shoulders, wrists, lower back, hamstrings and Achilles tendons
  • Builds core strength

Depending on the height of the pelvis and hips, upward plank pose also strengthens the hamstrings and glutes.

Yogis with wrist or shoulders injuries should skip inclined plane. Those with neck injuries or hyperthyroidism should also avoid this pose.

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