Upward FACING PLANK

Benefits

  • Opens up the chest.
  • Stretches the fronts of the shoulders.
  • Strengthens the hands, wrists, arms, shoulders, neck, back, abs, hips, glutes, legs, ankles and feet.
  • Improves posture.

Therapeutic

  • Can help to alleviate upper back and shoulder pain.

Skill Level

  • Intermediate

Category: Performance

  • Chest Opener
  • Upper Body Strength

Yoga 15 Series

    Instructions

    • Sit on the mat with your legs straight out in front of you, feet together. Position your hands 6-12 inches behind you. Try to point your fingertips forward. 
    • Externally rotate your shoulders and squeeze your shoulder blades together to open up your chest.
    • Lift your hips all the way up and look at the ceiling without letting your head drop back. Keep pressing into your palms and be careful not to let your hips drop. 
    • Stay in the pose for 5 deep breaths, in and out through your nose. Come down carefully on your last exhalation.

    Modification: Crab

    Upward Facing Plank

    If you find this pose challenging, you can start with the modified version. 

    • Sit on your mat with your knees bent, feet flat on the mat. Slide your hands 6-12 inches behind you. Try to point your fingertips forward but if that's not possible, you can point them out to the sides. 
    • Externally rotate your shoulders and draw your shoulder blades down your back to open up your chest.
    • Inhale, lift your chest and draw your shoulders back. Exhale, press into your feet and lift your hips all the way up. Your knees should be directly above your ankles, toes point straight ahead. 
    • Be careful not to let your hips drop. Look to your knees or up at the ceiling. 
    • Stay in the pose for 5 deep breaths, in and out through your nose. Come down carefully on your last exhalation. 

    Contraindications

    • Avoid the pose if you have a wrist, neck or shoulder injury.