How to do Dhanurasana (Bow Pose) – Steps, Benefits and Contraindications

Dhanurasana (धनुरासन) or the Bow Pose is a backbend that looks like an archer’s bow.

(Dhanur= Bow) Pronounced – Dhu-nuur-aa-sun-aa

Benefits of Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)

  • Helpful in mild backache, anxiety and fatigue.
  • Helps to reduce gastrointestinal disorders.
  • Improves blood circulation.
  • Helps to correct the hunching of upper back.
  • Stimulates abdominal organs, liver.
  • Re-aligns the spinal column.
  • Stretches the entire body.
  • Helpful in menstrual disorders.
  • Improves functioning of digestive and reproductive functions.
  • Removes excessive weight around the abdominal area.

Important: Yoga is about uniting your mind with your body and the key to this union is your breath, when you align your breath with your movements it would help you get the maximum benefit of the posture.

Please keep in mind that it is perfectly fine to not go deep into the posture until your body is ready to do so, this takes time and practice and that is why it is important to listen to your body, respect it’s limitation and slowly work on them. Do not try to compete with your counterparts or anyone else, that is not the goal. The goal is to live a healthy and stress free life.


Recommended – Natural non-toxic, anti-slip cork yoga mat

How to do Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)

  1. Lie down flat on your stomach, with legs straight, feet together and stretched out, hands besides your body.
  2. Bend both the knees and bring your heels closer to your buttocks.
  3. Take your hands towards you ankles and clasp the ankles.
  4. Look forward with chin on the ground.
  5. With inhalation, slowly push your legs away from buttocks, lift your thighs, head and chest together.
  6. Keep your arms straight and gaze forward.
  7. Keep breathing, do not hold your breath.
  8. Hold for 8-10 natural breaths.
  9. Exhale while coming out of the pose.

Contraindications of Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)

  • Not suitable for people with hernia, high blood pressure and insomnia.
  • Not to be practiced before sleeping as it stimulates sympathetic nervous system and adrenal glands.
  • Avoid during migraine and headache.
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