Downward Facing Dog
Ever find yourself struggling with this pose and thinking it should be way easier?! Don't worry, you aren't alone and it's actually a harder pose than most give it credit for. Here are some tips for your down dog:
1. Make sure your fingers are separated wide apart to evenly distribute weight through your palms (your middle or index fingers should typically point forward)
2. Relax your head and neck, keeping your biceps by your ears and gaze toward a spot between your big toes
3. Lift your tailbone toward the ceiling as you press your chest toward your thighs
4. Focus on keeping your spine long and straight, bending your knees as much as you need to (see picture below)
A lot of times students feel that their legs have to be straight and heels have to touching the mat. That will come with time and practice but aren't the important parts of this pose. Also, don't worry if down dog doesn't feel like a resting pose; its not! Your muscles should be engaged here! Yes, eventually this pose will come more naturally and you'll be able to use it as a place to come back to your breath during a challenging flow, but don't worry if you aren't there yet!