An Easy Guide to Chakrasana, or Yoga Wheel Pose

Chakrasana, or Yoga Wheel Pose, is also known was Urdhva Dhanurasana or the Upward Facing Bow Pose. It is a backbend, and when the pose is assumed, it resembles a wheel or an upward facing bow – hence the variety in names.

Chakrasana beach

Chakrasana is a great heart opener. It͛s also a yoga pose that builds a strong and supple spine and will squeeze out any tension as effectively as a mangle (but less painfully).

Watch a clip for this yoga pose 

How to do Chakrasana, or Yoga Wheel Pose , in easy steps

Step 1:

Lie on your back. The knees are bent, and the feet placed close to the sit bones, hip width apart and parallel to the sides of the mat.

Step 2:

Place the elbows above the head and put the palms flat on the mat, shoulder-width apart and fingers pointing at the feet.

Step 3:

With an exhalation, raise the chest and hips. Drop the head back and place the crown on the floor.

Step 4:

Bring the elbows towards each other. Lift the shoulders and sacrum and come on to the crown. Take a few breaths.

Step 5:

Firmly pressing through the hands and feet, raise the head and trunk on an exhalation. Extend the arms from the shoulders until they are completely straight. Stretch the legs up.

Step 6:

Stretch further by raising the heels off the floor to lift the thighs higher. Lift the hips and buttocks.

Step 7:

Keeping the height of the sacrum, take the heels down. Roll the outer thighs in.

Step 8:

Keep the neck and throat relaxed, don't strain.

Step 9:

Stay for 15 seconds to a minute, breathing normally.

Step 10:

To come out, exhale, bringing the chin into the chest and lowering the body to the floor.

Step 11:

Bring your knees in to your chest and give them a squeeze to counterpose your spine.


Chakrasana rocks

Yoga pose category:  Weight on hands

Level: 2

Chakrasana can be difficult as it is a full body stretch – but be sure not to push yourself further than you are comfortable. Make sure to practice on an empty stomach, as this will help you feel lighter and more comfortable, ready to stretch.

Sanskrit words meaning: 

Chakra - wheel or circle

Asana - pose 

Yoga pose health benefits: 

Like all yoga poses, Chakrasana has many health benefits. Use it to help with the following health conditions:


Breathing issues





Yoga pose contraindications: 

Don’t practice Chakrasana if you have any of the following health conditions: 

Back injury

Wrist injury

High blood pressure

Low blood pressure

Heart problems

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Lucy Edge 

is a yoga advocate and writer with three yoga books to her name, including the beloved travel memoir Yoga School Dropout. She writes regularly for the national press, has authored over 150 guides to types of yoga and yoga poses, discovered nearly 250 proven health benefits of yoga through her painstaking classification of 300 clinical studies, and collected more than 500 personal testimonials to the real life benefits of yoga. She is also the creator of our yoga shop – YogaClicks.Store – handpicking yoga brands that are beautifully made by yogis committed to environmental and social sustainability.