Downward-Facing Dog with Stacked Hips

Definition - What does Downward-Facing Dog with Stacked Hips mean?

Downward-facing dog with stacked hips is a deeper version of one-legged downward-facing dog pose. The asana is an intermediate variation of downward-facing dog, which is one of the most well-known poses in yoga and one of the first poses beginners learn.

To enter the pose, begin in downward-facing dog. On your hands and knees, align the wrists under the shoulders and the knees under the hips. Straighten the elbows while relaxing the upper back. Then tuck the toes and lift the knees off the ground. Gently straighten the legs while reaching the sit bones up and back. Draw the lower abdomen in and up to support the spine. Keep the gaze between the legs. The body forms an inverted ā€œVā€ with the feet and hands pressing into the ground, the hips pushing to the sky. Now, extend one leg up toward the sky, keeping the hips square. Bend the knee of raised leg so the foot drops to the opposite side, then point that knee to the sky and stack the hips atop one another. Hold for a cycle of three to six breaths then repeat on the opposite side.

Yogapedia explains Downward-Facing Dog with Stacked Hips

Downward-facing dog with stacked hips opens the hips, stretches the thigh muscles and strengthens the abdominal muscles. It relieves stress and calms the mind while energizing and rejuvenating the entire body. As an inverted pose, downward-facing dog with stacked hips is thought to provide a different perspective on an emotional level, boosting confidence.

Additional benefits of downward-facing dog with stacked hips include:

  • Improves balance
  • Strengthens the entire skeletal system
  • Increases flexibility of the hips, back and arms
  • Strengthens the wrists, arms and shoulders
  • Lengthens the spine
  • Relieves stress, insomnia and headaches through improved blood flow
  • Relieves asthma, fatigue, menopause symptoms and sciatica
  • Boosts self-confidence
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