It’s just the most famous and highly practiced yoga posture of all time, that’s all!
If they gave out Oscars for yoga, this pose would have won Best Picture and, I’m sure, a lifetime-achievement award.
For me, it is the quintessential pose and one that inspires me each and every time I practice yoga.
I don’t think I’ve ever done a yoga class without a few downward-facing dogs thrown in. In fact, the downward dog is typically a pose that is done many times throughout a class. It is a restorative pose and one that strengthens and stretches almost every muscle in the body, especially the back. My back would like to thank the downward-facing dog for the many hours of pain relief it has provided.
When I first start a class, my body struggles to move into this pose, and my heels aren’t even close to being flat on the ground. They say some people will never get their heels to touch the ground in this pose, and I’m pretty sure I’m one of those people. That first downward dog is always tough, and I feel my inflexible gene kicking into high gear. As the class continues I push myself to get what I came for, my body warms up, and, miraculously, by the end of class, that downward dog feels oh so good as it stretches out my lower back, arms, legs, and I’m getting those heels just a little closer to the floor every time…aahh, I love yoga!
The first time I did yoga I was in my early 40’s. I started practicing with a wonderful instructor, and I knew immediately that yoga was the elixir I needed to calm my stress levels and to heal the tightness and pain in my back, neck, and shoulders. As with all things that are good for you, I quickly fell off the bandwagon of yoga healing. Not because I didn’t like yoga—I loved yoga—but because there just wasn’t enough time in the day.
Life changes (thankfully) and I eventually made it back to a yoga studio with a crooked back and a lot of healing to do, ready to take on a new yoga journey. I have been addicted to the yoga high ever since and today am proud to say that I am a certified yoga instructor. I never make the excuse that there is not enough time in the day. Yoga has brought acceptance, balance, and calm to my life, and if that wasn’t enough, it took away my back pain! I am growing spiritually and getting more flexible each and every day. I truly feel that yoga is the key to keeping my body in shape; no hip replacements or walkers for me. Yoga is going to make me a lean, mean fighting machine well into my 50s and beyond.
The Daily Downward Dog is dedicated to sharing my journal of cool yoga experiences as I journey through the amazing spiritual worlds of yoga and meditation, along with this thing called life thrown in. My goal is to share the benefits of yoga for people of all ages, and especially women in their peri-menopause and menopausal years and to help bring relief to the back-pain sufferers of the world. I want to demystify yoga, make it for all us inflexible people, mash it up with some great music, celebrate the spiritual healing, and help you do it all on a budget.
Have you always wanted to try yoga, but don’t know where to start? The Daily Downward Dog will provide the information and a little mojo to get you started on your very own yoga journey. Hope to see you in a yoga class soon.
The Daily Downward Dog Mantras
You don’t have to rub crystals and listen to Yanni to get into yoga.
Regular use of a yoga mat can help you kick aging in the ass.
Mean people suck.
Deep breathing is the most affordable stress reliever on the market.
Laugh out loud every day.
Practice seva. Pay it forward the yoga way.
Yoga is for inflexible people.
Don’t be afraid to take risks both on and off the yoga mat.
Friends and family are your most precious commodity.
Yoga is the best therapy, alternative medicine, and legally attainable high!
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Disclaimer: Before starting any new exercise routine, please consult a doctor, especially if you are pregnant, or have existing injuries or illnesses. The articles on this blog are meant to inspire you to give yoga a try, but you know your body best, so please only do those exercises that feel right for you.