5 Yoga Poses to Build Strength

5 Yoga Poses To Make You Stronger

Forearm Plank Pose


Yes, yoga can absolutely make you strong! Despite popular belief, yoga can be so much more than just stretching.Many people only think of yoga as a way to learn how to place your feet behind your head!Luckily, that’s not the only good thing about yoga!

Many yoga postures require great core strength and balance, practicing these poses can lead to being much stronger from head to toe.

Often, new students are surprised to discover the strength needed for certain yoga poses.

For example, Downward Dog is thought of as a resting posture, but hold it for a bit and you will discover the strength it requires!

So, hitting the mat will not only help with being flexible and reducing stress, it will also make you stronger!

Okay, time to take a peek at 5 yoga poses that will make you stronger!


Downward Facing Dog or Adho Mukha Svanasana


Downward Facing Dog Pose

Downward Facing Dog or Adho Mukha Svanasana may very well be the most well known yoga posture of all the postures.Many beginners are somewhat surprised to learn that Down Dog is really a resting pose during Vinyasa Flow sequences. Primary muscles used during the pose are the glutes, traps, hamstrings, triceps and lats. Downward Dog is considered a mild inversion and is a big part of the Sun Salutations sequence. The pose is named after the way in which dogs naturally stretch.The major benefits of Downward Dog Pose include stretching the shoulders, hamstrings and wrists. The pose can also help to strengthen the hands and wrists, elongate the spine, help blood circulation and even stretch the toes. As a mild inversion, the pose also increases blood flow to brain and can help memory.Standing Forward Bend Pose, and Plank Pose are good prep postures for Downward Facing Dog.

You should avoid Downward Dog if you’re in a late term pregnancy, suffer from servere Carpal Tunnel, have diarrhea, inner ear infections, or high blood pressure. It’s also a good idea to avoid the pose if you have arm or shoulder injuries.

Major Tip: Many students thrive to attain flat feet but it’s not required! Remember to relax the neck and head! Spread your fingers!

Downward Facing Dog Pose offers a variety of benefits, some of which are listed below. Enjoy the pose!


Downward Dog Pose Benefits:

Stretches Shoulders, Hamstrings, and Wrists

Can Strengthen Hands, Wrists, Back and Calves

Elongates The Spine

Helps Blood Circulation

Pose Can Also Help Stretch The Toes

Dolphin Pose or Makarasana


Dolphin Pose

Dolphin Pose is a simple yet challenging inversion that also builds strength.Students may find Dolphin Pose to be a nice way to get their feet wet before deciding to move forward with a full inversion posture like a Headstand. This pose is a sound way to also get prepared for Forearm Stand, another difficult arm balance. Dolphin Pose is very similar to Downward Facing Dog, but it’s made far more challenging by the placement of the forearms onto the ground.

The major benefits of Dolphin Pose include strengthening the arms and shoulders, providing a nice stretch for the hamstrings, helping build endurance, opening the upper back, and the pose offers a less scary or less challenging way to work toward inversions. As a mild inversion, the pose also increases blood flow to brain and can help memory. The pose is also known to aid digestion.

Standing Forward Bend PosePlank Pose and Forearm Plank Pose, are good prep postures for Dolphin Pose.

You should avoid Dolphin Pose if you have a shoulder injury, high blood pressure or a neck injury or issue.

Major Tip: Remember to engage your core and try not to round your spine. It’s also a good idea to protect your neck by relaxing your head and letting it hang without tension.

Dolphin Pose offers a variety of benefits, some of which are listed below. Enjoy the pose!


Dolphin Pose Benefits:

Strengthens The Shoulders and Arms

Good Stretch For the Hamstrings

Can Help to Improve Digestion

Known to Help Relieve Menopause

Pose is Good Preparation For Forearm Stands


Plank Pose or Kumbhakasana


Plank Pose

Plank Pose! A basic pose but so very beneficial!Plank is truly one of the most basic yoga postures. However, if you think it looks easy, just try holding it for a short time! Plank will aid you greatly in building the needed strength in order to practice more advanced postures. The pose is called Plank as you hold your body straight and stiff like a wooden plank.The major benefits of Plank Pose include building strength in your abdomen. Plank will also aid in wrist and arm strength as well. It’s also likely that the pose can offer improved posture in your upper body and neck. A solid Plank Pose will also help with smooth and strong transitions from one pose to another pose.Plow Pose, Hero Pose and Bridge Pose are all good prep postures for Shoulder Stand.

Make sure to keep a straight and aligned spine, create a strong line from your head to your heels. Engage your abdomen or core and don’t allow your shoulders to collapse. When practicing this posture, sagging is the enemy! As you advance, you may consider adding a challenge by lifting one foot off the floor.

Major Tip: Keep your shoulders aligned over your wrists! Don’t forget to breathe!

Plank Pose offers a variety of benefits, some of which are listed below. Enjoy the pose!


Plank Pose Benefits:

Builds Arm Strength

Improves Posture

Strengthens Spine

Helps Build Wrist Strength

Strengthens Abdomen & Core


Boat Pose or Navasana


Navasana Boat Pose

Boat Pose or Navasana will test your core strength!Of course, core strength is essential to many yoga postures, but postures like Boat Pose have an even greater need for good solid core strength! Boat Pose is another pose that looks simple enough, but once you try it for the first time, you may be pretty surprised by it’s level of difficulty.

As an added benefit, Boat Pose is also a great deep hip flexor posture. The pose will help to develop strength in the hip flexors which attach to the front of the spine. Naturally, Navasana pose also helps with balance and focus, especially in what we call Full Boat Pose with the legs straight.

Downward Facing Dog Pose, and Standing Forward Bend Pose are both good prep postures for Wide Legged Forward Fold.

As mentioned above, Full Boat Pose would have extended straight legs. Half Boat Pose would be practiced with the knees bent and if needed you could also place the hands behind the knees to aid balance.

Remember to spread your shoulder blades across your back, try to refrain from rounding the back. Reach through your finger tips. Try keeping your arms parallel to the floor. Start the pose with your hands placed slightly behind your hips to help press and lift your feet from the ground and lean back slightly. Keep your knees bent if you’re not ready to straighten them.

Boat Pose offers a variety of benefits, some of which are listed below. Enjoy the pose!


Boat Pose Benefits:

Strengthens The Core

Helps Create Strong Hip Flexors

Improves Digestion

Improves Coordination & Balance

Builds Focus & Confidence

Forearm Plank Pose

Forearm Plank Pose

Get ready to fire up your core and your practice!Forearm Plank Pose is a basic yet powerful posture, the pose will challenge your core strength and endurance. You can find this pose being used in many workout styles, it seems especially popular in boot camp style routines. It’s also very popular in many Vinyasa and Power yoga classes.

Shoulder Stand Pose, and Bridge Pose are both good prep postures for Plow Pose.

The major benefits of Forearm Plank Pose include toning and strengthening the core and abdominals, the posture will also help with gaining power in the shoulders and arms. Once you try the pose, you will also understand how Forearm Plank will test your resolve and endurance while holding the posture.

This pose has many variations including Side Forearm Plank and also Dolphin Pose which will further test your strength!

Major Tips: If you wish to hold this posture for a longer period of time, it’s can be helpful to place a towel beneath your arms to help with cushioning. Keep a flat straight back without sagging, think of having a line of energy from your head to your heels.

Forearm Plank Pose offers a variety of benefits, some of which are listed below. Enjoy the pose!


Forearm Plank Pose Benefits:

Strengthens Core

Strengthens Shoulders

Tones The Glutes

Preps For Inversions

Challenges Your Focus


We hope you find the above poses helpful additions to your yoga practice.Of course, there are many more postures that can help you build strength, but hopefully these are a good start!As always, practice safely while on the mat!