Chaturanga to Upward Dog Transition

The transition between Chaturanga to Upward Dog is very common in yoga classes. In this post, I will cover the correct way to do this transition. Most people are doing the transition in a way that is creating imbalances in their body.

How to transition from Chaturanga to Upward Dog without creating imbalances in your body.

Incorrect Ways to Transition from Chaturanga to Upward Dog

There are a couple of ways that I see people doing this transition that is incorrectly and potentially harmful.

  • Letting their body sag in Chaturanga instead of keeping their core engaged and lowering with a straight back
  • Flipping one foot and the other (this becomes an issue because people tend to always do the same foot first and then an imbalance is created)

Correct Ways to Transition from Chaturanga to Upward Dog

To avoid imbalances and putting unnecessary stress and compressions on your body, work towards the following:

  • Keep your core engaged as you lower in Chaturanga, don’t forget to keep your elbows in close to your body
  • Once you are lowered into Chaturanga, push your toes back a few inches, then pull yourself forward onto the tops of your feet

Take a look at the video below, it demonstrates rolling over your toes.

Alternative Transition

It takes a lot of strength to be able to do the rolling over your toes technique. If this is not accessible to you at this time, I would recommend using your knees.

After you lower into Chaturanga, place your knees down onto the mat and then change the position of your feet so that the tops of your feet are resting on the mat. Once your feet are positioned properly, you can push up into Upward Facing Dog.

If Upward Facing Dog is too challenging for you, you can do Cobra instead.

Upward Facing Dog is that is often confused with Cobra Pose. Take a look at Upward Facing Dog: A Pose You Think You Are Doing Correctly for a detailed look at the difference between the two poses.



Disclaimer: Not all exercise programs are suitable for everyone. Check with your doctor before beginning any fitness/health program to avoid/reduce the risk of injury. Perform these exercises at your own risk. Abby is not responsible or liable for any injury sustained as a result of using any fitness/health program presented or advice discussed on the Journeys of Yoga blog. Please see my full disclosure for more details.

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