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An Easy Guide to Reverse Plank, or Purvottanasana 

Work your yoga practice with our easy guides to great yoga poses. Reverse Plank, or Purvottanasana, is a great yoga pose for beginners, strengthening the arms and wrists as well as the legs. It draws on the strength of the core, so is great for toning abs. 

Watch a clip

Reverse Plank, or Purvottanasana, is a great yoga pose for beginners, strengthening the arms and wrists as well as the legs. It draws on the strength of the core, so is great for toning abs. 

Reverse Plank is a great counterpose to forward bends and a lovely, simple chest and heart opener. 

 

Watch a clip for this yoga pose 

 

How to do Reverse Plank, or Purvottanasana, in easy steps  

Step 1:

Sit on the floor with your legs extended in front of you. 

Step 2:

Place the hands a few inches behind your hips, the hands are parallel to the edges of the mat and the fingers are facing towards the feet. 

Step 3:

Bend the knees and place the soles of the feet flat on the floor, toes facing forward. 

Step 4:

Exhale, press through your hands and feet and slowly lift the hips towards the ceiling. 

Step 5:

Make sure the arms are directly under the shoulders and straight, like your legs. 

Step 6:

Push up through the chest, lengthen the neck and, if comfortable, slowly lower the head back. 

Step 7:

Take 10 slow breaths. 

 
 
Step 8:

To exit, exhale and bend the elbows and knees to lower the body. Shake out your wrists. 


Image: Ariadne Vickers

Yoga pose category:  Weight on hands 

Yoga pose level: 1 

If you are a beginner struggling with Reverse Plank, practice with the support of a chair. 

Sit near the front edge of the seat, then hold the back edge and push your pelvis upwards. Practicing like this will help you build your balance and arm strength, ready to practice the yoga pose without support. 

 

Sanskrit words meaning: 

Purva - the East 

Ut – intense  

Tan - stretch   

Asana - pose

 

Yoga pose health benefits: 

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

Fatigue

Anxiety 

Stress 

Breathing issues 

Yoga pose contraindications: 

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

 Wrist injury 

Neck injury



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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.

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