yoga – downward facing dog.

By Charlie Murray

New year, new moves? We often get questions at the end of a class with people asking advice about particular movements or things they’re having difficulty with, and likewise if you’re new to yoga or pilates it can all seem a bit overwhelming. So welcome to the first in a series of instructional posts designed to help you get the most out of your classes and hopefully fill in some blanks.

We’ll be putting out these posts as a point of reference and will be covering some of the most common positions and exercises across both yoga and pilates.

Up first, is Downward-Facing Dog, otherwise known as Adho-Mukha Svanasana. This position is a great stretch for your hamstrings, calves and lats and despite what you may think the first time you try it, the pose is considered a rest position in class, so it’s important to ensure you’re actually able to rest when the time comes.

Here are our tips:

  • Prioritise a long straight spine, so don’t worry if this means your heels aren’t grounded
  • Inside creases of the elbow face one another, with a micro-bend in the elbows to avoid hyperextension
  • Index and middle finger form a V-shape with the top of your mat
  • Aim for even weight distribution through all four points of contact
  • Don’t be afraid to bend your knees
  • Don’t sag into your shoulders
  • Keep your core engaged to protect your spine

As always, be sure to seek professional advice before attempting any yoga pose. Always be sure you’re having fun too.