Extended Puppy Pose - Uttana Shishosana

Extended Puppy Pose (Uttana Shishosana) is one of the easier and simpler forward bends that one can practice in yoga. This Extended Puppy Pose is a pose that can help relieve stress. Do keep in mind however, that this pose is not considered a restorative pose in yoga.

This pose is recommended when one wants to relax the body and the mind. It is considered a great stress buster.

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Uttana Shishosana can be incorporated into any yoga sequence as you can easily move out of this pose in to other poses like or Virasana (Hero Pose) or Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward-Facing Dog).

Steps :

  1. Start the pose by being on all fours. Get down onto your hands and knees. Ensure that your wrists are positioned directly below your shoulders and your knees are positioned directly under your hips.
  2. Now using your hands walk forward slowly and lower your chest towards the floor.
  3. Exhale and drop your buttocks downward till it reaches halfway to your feet. Ensure that your arms are straight and hands are still touching the floor while doing so. Your arms should not be hitting the ground at all.
  4. Move your head forward slowly until your forehead touches the floor. While doing this arch your back towards the floor. Your arms should now be resting on the floor in front of you.
  5. Push your hips back now and stretch (lengthen) your spine.
  6. Stay in this position for about 30 seconds to one minute. Breathe deeply while in this pose.

Precautions :

  • This pose should not be practiced by people who have knee injuries.

  • Do not attempt to practice this pose unless it is under the guidance of an experienced yoga practitioner.

Beginner's Tip :

A beginner who finds it difficult to practice the Extended Puppy Pose should keep this tip in mind. In order to hold this pose for a longer duration as well as to support the lower back and knees, a beginner should place either a blanket (rolled up) or a bolster between his calves and thighs. This is the beginner's tip for Extended Puppy Pose.

Benefit To Body Part :

  • It stretches the shoulder and the spine.
  • It improves the flexibility of the spine.
  • It stretches and strengthens the arms, upper back and hips.
  • It invigorates the body.
  • It calms the mind and helps to relieve stress.

Therapeutic Applications :

  • It relieves tension and chronic stress.
  • It is also helpful in treating insomnia.
  • It stretches the spine and the shoulders.

Variations :

  • You can place a bolster under your forehead to support your weight.
  • If you wish to hold the pose for a longer duration, you can place a bolster or a rolled up blanket between your thighs and calves.

Preparatory Poses :

  • Downward Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
  • Hero Pose (Virasana)

Follow Up Poses :

  • Child's Pose (Balasana)
  • Downward Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
  • Hero Pose (Virasana)
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