(Uttana Shishosana): Techniques, Benefits, Variations

Level – Beginner

Puppy Pose

(Uttana Shishosana)

Puppy Pose Prep & Practice

1

Come to a tabletop position, bringing the shoulders over wrists and hips over the knees. You can curl or uncurl the toes.

2

Begin to walk both hands in front of you a few inches. On an exhalation, shift the hips back so that they stay directly over the knees.

3

Fingers are spread wide, grip the mat.

4

Press your chest toward the ground, while keeping both arms active. Ears come in line with biceps, and elbows stay off of the ground.

5

Breathe as you draw your hips toward your heels and stretch through the chest and arms.

6

To come out, slowly walk both hands toward you as you lift back up to a neutral tabletop.

Variations/Modifications

  • Bring a blanket underneath the knees
  • Rest the forehead on a block or rolled up blanket

Physical, Mental and Emotional Benefits

  • Increases flexibility in the shoulders
  • Stretches the spine
  • Opens the chest
  • Promotes introspection

Contraindications

  • Knee Injury
  • Weak wrists 
  • Shoulder Injury

Thoughtful Sequencing

Cow and Cat Pose (Bitilasana and Marjaryasana) 3x, Puppy Pose (Uttana Shishosana), Sphinx (Salamba Bhujangasana), Child’s Pose (Balasana), Seated Spinal Twist/Half Lord of the Fishes (Ardha Matsyendrasana) Left and Right, Seated Forward Bend (Paschimottanasana), Bridge (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)

Want more yoga pose tutorials? See more in my Yoga Pose Directory.