Home  /  Yogasana Postures

Dhanurasana (Bow Pose): Basics, Steps, Benefits & More

Dhanurasana is the 8th pose among the 12 basic Hatha Yoga Poses. It is also a heart-opening backbend stretch asana in Hatha yoga as well as modern yoga style. It helps improve your posture by opening up your chest and shoulders, which counteracts the hours spent at your desk every day.

Dhanurasana Basics

Sanskrit PronunciationDhanurasana
MeaningDhanu means “bow”
asana means “posture or pose.”
Pose Typeback-bending pose
Pose LevelBeginner Level
Style of yogaHatha Yoga
Other NamesUrdava Dhanurasana or Bow Pose
StretchesAbdomen, chest, shoulders, front of your hips
Strengthening Back muscles, the back of your thighs, and buttocks
Duration30 second to 3 minutes

Dhanurasana Meaning

Dhanu means “bow” and asana means “posture or pose.”

In this asana, the shape of the body becomes like a “bow”, hence this asana is called Dhanurasana or Bow Pose.

Dhanurasana posture is called Urdava Dhanurasana or bow posture. This is one of the most important three back stretching and highly preferred yoga asanas. In Dhanurasana, both parts of the body rise simultaneously, precisely combining the two movements of grasshopper and cobra, as well as forward bend and plough. In this asana, the abdomen and thighs form part of the bow and the legs and lower arms act as the torso of the bow.

The special thing about Dhanurasana is that by doing this asana one gets the benefits of Bhujangasana and Salabhasana. Dhanurasana is very beneficial for our waist and spine. Not only this, by doing this asana many stomach related problems also go away. Furthermore, it provides an excellent and powerful message to the internal organs.

Practice Guide For Dhanurasana

The practice guide to perform Dhanurasana serves as a valuable resource for yoga enthusiasts seeking to advance their practice, offering a structured and detailed approach to mastering this asana.

Preparatory Poses

Bow Pose: Step-by-step instructions

  • Lie flat on your stomach (prone position) on a yoga mat, with your feet hip-width apart and your arms resting alongside your body, palms facing up.
  • You can place your chin or forehead on the mat. Choose the position that feels most comfortable for your neck and spine.
  • Bend your knees and bring your heels toward your buttocks, keeping them hip-width apart. Your knees should be close to each other.
  • Reach back with your hands and grasp your ankles firmly. If you’re unable to reach your ankles, you can use a yoga strap looped around your ankles to assist you in the pose.
  • As you inhale, lift your heels away from your buttocks and simultaneously lift your thighs and chest off the mat. This action will also lift your upper body, including your head and shoulders.
  • Engage your back muscles to lift higher into the pose, focusing on creating a deep arch in your spine.
  • Keep your gaze forward and avoid straining your neck by looking too far up or down.
  • Hold Dhanurasana for 15-30 seconds, breathing deeply and evenly.
  • To release the pose, exhale slowly and gently lower your legs, chest, and head back to the mat. Release your ankles and extend your legs, resting in a prone position with your arms alongside your body.

Follow-up Poses

Once you do Bow Pose successfully, you should perform some follow-up poses.

Health Benefits of Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)

  • Bow pose strengthens the stomach muscles and improves your digestion. This eliminates problems like indigestion. Many types of diseases related to your stomach and its surrounding areas can be eradicated.
  • Its regular practice strengthens the muscles of your thighs, and your buttocks, and stretches the hamstrings, it also cures back pain.
  • It is considered a good exercise for respiratory diseases such as asthma, as it expands the chest and increases the respiratory capacity of the lungs.
  • You will feel an energizing feeling in your vertebrae while practicing this yoga asana.
  • Regular practice provides physical and mental comfort. At the same time, the thinking process becomes very clear and precise.
  • It is also beneficial in relieving joint pain from the entire body.
  • This asana can prove to be quite useful in increasing flexibility in the body. Especially at the time when you are experiencing spinal pain due to doing a desk job.
  • If you have sinusitis problems or there is a problem of mucus or phlegm in the respiratory tract, then the practice of Bow Pose clears the respiratory system. With constant practice, the speed of breath also starts to stabilize.
  • By practicing this regularly, the internal organs of the body are massaged. It is helpful in removing obesity.
  • Bow Pose improves liver and kidney function in the organism. It keeps the body’s stomach, liver, kidneys, pancreatic, etc. healthy
  • It is also done to get relief from facial problems and body pain.


  • Beginners remember that don’t go beyond your limits during Asana. Otherwise, it causes serious injuries.
  • If you are suffering from a hernia, ulcers, colitis, and any stomach disease, do not do this asana. Because this posture puts maximum pressure on the stomach.
  • Pregnant women should not do this asana.
  • If you are suffering from any disease then consult a doctor before practicing this asana.


Like the other backbends, Dhanurasana or Bow Pose improves the body posture, stimulates the adrenal glands, stretches the abdomen, chest, shoulders, and front of your hips, as well as strengthens the back muscles, and the back of your thighs. It may help ex-football players and opens the thighs, pelvic region, abdominal, and heart.


The content is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional