Skip to main content
Trainers working with clients

Stretch of the Week: Upward Facing Dog

by AthleticoLeave a Comment

Week two of May is a bit of a deeper psoas stretch. It doesn’t have a name but I guess we can call it a variation on the yoga pose upward facing dog. In this variation we are focusing on the front of the hip where the psoas resides.聽

If you have low back pain please be careful with this one and only do the modified version. You won’t need anything for this stretch other than space on the floor! 馃檪

How to do the Upward Facing Dog:

  1. Lay face down on the floor. Take the right leg out to the right. Bring the right foot out and up, so far that it is in line with the right hip. The left leg stays straight back, toenails on the floor. Think 90 degree angle between the legs here.
  1. For the modified version place your forearms on the floor so that the elbows are not more than shoulder width apart. They also need to be slightly in front of the shoulders. You don’t want the elbows directly under the shoulders here. Shown in top left photo, marked 1.聽

Stretch of the Week Upward Facing Dog

  1. For the more advanced version start to straighten the arms and walk the hands back until they are under the shoulders. This will lift the torso off the ground as well as the pelvis. You should start to feel a stretch through the front left hip. You may also feel a stretch through the inner right thigh if you are tight there. Bring the belly button to the spine and then up towards the diaphragm, to protect the low back. Shown in the top right photo marked 2. If you feel too much pinching or pain in the low back then come back down to the forearms.

Tip: keep the chest open in both variations by squeezing the shoulder blades together. Roll the shoulders back, as well as down. Think of pushing the heart forward here. You don’t want to collapse in the chest and round in the upper back, as shown in the bottom photo.

  1. Stay here for 30 seconds or longer if you desire. Then lower yourself back down and switch sides.

Questions? Email me at rlackowski@athletico.com聽and view other stretches here.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *