Bow Pose

Yoga is a gradual learning process and takes years of dedication to perfect the postures and learn everything about it. One of the basic poses in Hatha Yoga is the bow pose, also called as Dhanurasana, which helps in stretching and strengthening the back. In this pose, the back is bent into a bow shape as the foot is lifted up and held with the hands via the toes.

It is comparatively an easy pose and can be mastered in less time. It helps in building incredible strength and in opening up the tension in the body. Performing this pose, however, requires a lot of patience to bring it to perfection. It helps in strengthening the spinal column and flexes the back muscle.

How To Perform The Pose

The posture of the bow pose is easy to perform once mastered. Wearing yoga shorts or pants makes the experience more comfortable. Here are the step by step instructions in doing the pose:

1. Start by lying flat on the stomach and place the hands along the torso. Keep the feet apart and bring your knees folded towards your buttocks after exhaling.

2. Take your hands behind your back and hold your ankle and pull it towards your back while inhaling. It will create a bow-like shape. While pulling your legs towards the back, ensure that your thighs are lifted from the floor.

3. As you lift your heels and thighs high, open your heart by pressing your shoulders and moving them from the ears. As you hold the pose, look forward.

4. Press your stomach on the ground and hold the pose for 20 to 30 seconds by breathing in and out. Release the pose slowly by exhaling.


  • It is one of the beginner poses and is easy to perform through regular practice. It helps in strengthening the back and stretches multiple parts of the body like the abdomen, thorax, throat, front body, psoas major muscle, etc.
  • It helps in stretching the reproductive organs and stimulating them.
  • It helps in toning the arm and leg muscles due to its regular pulling in and stretching. It helps in massaging the digestive organs and adds back flexibility.
  • It relieves menstrual pain in women by relaxing the system.
  • Regular practice helps in relieving renal problems and constipation.

Mistakes And Contradictions

Although it is an easy pose, there are some things one must keep in mind. It is recommended not to practice this pose in case of hernia, low blood pressure, migraines, headaches, neck injuries, or recent abdominal surgery. It must be avoided in case of high or low blood pressure. Do not pull yourself too much as it might lead to muscle pull or injury. Do not continue the pose if you feel compression in the lower back.

Best Way To Perform Perfectly

The best way to perform the pose is to slowly take it step by step and not stretch much on the first day. The load is on the abdominal area, and hence, it must be performed on an empty stomach. Make sure that you perform the pose only after 4 to 6 hours of taking a meal. The best time to perform the bow pose is early morning during an empty bowel.