This is a fairly simple pose, but it can be challenging for practitioners with limited flexibility in the hamstrings or back of the body. Gorilla pose provides a good stretch for those areas, even in modified versions, including bending of the knees. Another variation allows for the practitioner to hold the big toes rather than placing the whole hand under the soles of the feet. For those with more flexibility, the intention is to fold the torso onto the thighs, with the forehead moving toward the shins and the crown of the head pointing to the floor.
Like all forward bends, gorilla pose is considered a calming pose. It is also an inversion, so it increases blood flow to the brain. This is a good pose for creating flexibility in the hamstrings and the back of the body. The hand position helps the neck and shoulders relax, and it is said to be therapeutic for those with carpal tunnel syndrome.