Dhanurvakrasana – The Bow Posture

Dhanurvakrasana – The Bow Posture

Dhanurvakrasana also known as The Bow Pose is a slightly difficult asana to do, but if done correctly, can be very beneficial for your entire body. The asana helps improve digestion, strengthens your spine, tones the muscles of your back and can also helps keep your sexual organs in order.


Starting Position:

  1. Lie down on your stomach on a mat with your hands by the side.
  2. Bend your knees and fold your legs towards the back.
  3. Grasp the ankles of your legs.
  4. Inhaling, raise your head upwards and simultaneously pull legs upwards, arching the spine, keeping both the legs together
  5. While retaining your breath, maintain the position for six seconds.


Posture Release:

  1. Exhaling, lower the legs and head. Release the grasp on your ankles and return to the starting posture.



  1. Hypertension, heart ailments.
  2. Pregnancy, hernia, peptic ulcers.
  3. Serious spinal ailments and arthritis.



  1. It puts great pressure on your abdominal area as your entire body is balancing on the naval area.
  2. Your entire spine is arched; it greatly enhances flexibility of your spine.
  3. It opens up your chest, neck and shoulders.
  4. It tones your leg and arm muscles.



  1. It improves blood circulation in the abdominal and reproductive organs.
  2. It aids elimination through intra-abdominal pressure.
  3. It provides relief from flatulence.
  4. It provides relief in generalized muscular back pain.
  5. It provides relief in ankylosing spondylitis.
  6. It aids in controlling diabetes.
  7. It realigns your back thereby improve your breathing process.



  1. It improves concentration.
  2. It is very useful for overcoming lethargy.
  3. It is a good stress and fatigue buster.
  4. It relaxes your mind and helps in conditions related to depression.


Muscles Involved:

  1. Extensors of the hip, elbow, wrist and neck.
  2. Extensors and abductors of the shoulder joint.
  3. Flexors of the fingers.
  4. Anterior trunk muscles, rectus abdominus, quadriceps, anterior abdominal wall muscles.
  5. Sternomastoid and pectoralis major.


Hansajl J. Yogendra’s Variation for Dhanurvakrasana

  1. Lie on your stomach with your feet together.
  2. While inhaling, raise your right leg from behind and grasp your toes/ankle with your right hand.
  3. Simultaneously, bring your left hand in the front and raise it straight up as high as possible to create a balance.
  4. While exhaling, release your leg and bring it down, simultaneously lower your hand and bring it to the side.
  5. Repeat with the other leg and hand.


Variation 2:

  1. Same as above.
  2. Separate the legs as much as you can but keep them straight.
  3. Bend both your legs and grasp your toes/ankles from behind.
  4. While inhaling, raise your legs and your upper body as much as you comfortably can.
  5. While exhaling, release the grasp and lower your body, bringing your arms to rest beside your thighs.
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