• Nicole Coons

How to Modify Upward-facing Dog in Yoga to Minimize Diastasis

Today we're talking about how you can do upward facing dog during pregnancy by shifting the pose so that you can still get all the benefits of upward facing dog, which include:

  • arms down chest open, giving you that chest opening feeling that feels so good

  • opening the front of the hips, your hip flexors

  • without over-stretching the belly

  • and going easy on the low back

You're going to love this wonderful modification for upward facing dog.

And whether you're taking a regular yoga class and modifying upward-facing dog, or if you're in a prenatal yoga class and they're not offering this particular one, you can always slide it in and it feels so good.

Here's how:

Come onto all fours and begin with some cat and cow exhale, push the floor away and round the spine.

Inhale, open the body.

Exhale, push the floor away and round the spine.

As you inhale, lengthen the spine, come neutral. Let the hips settle back to the heels.

Place the palms on blocks behind you and open the chest. This is your modification for upward facing dog.

Press the palms, open the chest. And if you'd like, extend the hips forward by pressing the knees down, nestle the front ribs into the body and let the hips float up.

So we want to be careful as you inhale, press the palms in don't puff the chest and push the belly too far. We want to keep the integrity of the core while also allowing a big expansion across the top of the chest.

As you exhale, let those front ribs melt down and press the hips or float the hips up opening the front of the hip flexors without extending or stretching over-stretching the belly.

Come into downward dog after upward facing dog for a little counter stretch. Gazing at your baby will help to release the back of the shoulders and the back of the neck.

Then you can even come into child's pose with your knees wide, big toes touching forehead down as an alternative to downward dog.

Give this a try and write in the comments how this felt for you!


Since Devoted Mamas' founding in 2017, our mission is to help you through all the stages of motherhood - stay super strong (and calm!) during pregnancy, be the BOSS of your birth, and help you bring life back to your core + pelvic floor in postpartum.

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