Dolphin Pose (Ardha Pincha Mayurasana)
Level – Intermediate

Pose Prep & Practice

  1. Beginning on hands and knees, knees hip-width apart and stacked under hips. Lower onto forearms, elbows stacked under shoulders.
  2. Spread through the fingers, curl toes under, press down through the hands and forearms. Exhale and lift the knees away from the floor, keeping knees bent and heels lifted as you lift the hips up and back.
  3. Abdominals draw up and in, knitting front ribs, lengthening through spine. Externally rotate upper arms, draw shoulders down the back, away from the ears.
  4. Begin to straighten the legs, quadriceps engage, knees lift, thighs draw up and back as you continue to press down through the forearms, keeping the spine long as pubic bone and tailbone draw up and back and chest moves away from the floor. Ears in line with biceps.
  5. Breathe into the back body, relax the jaw. Legs, core, arms and hands energized and engaged.
  6. To come out of the pose, on an exhalation, lower the knees.


  • Keeping elbows stacked under shoulders, clasp hands or use block between the hands.
  • Keep knees bent
  • Rest head on block
  • Use a block between the thighs

Physical, Mental and Emotional Benefits

  • Stretches hamstrings, calves and feet
  • Strengthens arms and shoulders
  • Stimulates the brain and improves digestion
  • Relieves headaches and insomnia
  • Strengthens and prepares the body for inversions
  • Focuses concentration


  • Shoulder or neck injuries
  • Glaucoma
  • Head Injuries
  • High Blood Pressure

Thoughtful Sequencing

Cow (Bitilasana) and Cat (Marjaryasana) 5X to Child’s Pose (Balasana). Plank Pose, lower knees and come onto forearms. Lift knees to come into Dolphin (Ardha Pincha Mayurasana). Inhale forward to forearm plank, exhale to Dolphin (Ardha Pincha Mayursana) 3-5X, hold Dolphin (Ardha Pincha Mayrasana) 5-10 breaths. Lower knees onto mat, rest in Child’s Pose (Balasana).

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