Staff Pose - Dandasana

Staff Pose - YanvaYoga


Staff pose, or Dandasana (“Danda-” meaning staff, “-asana” meaning pose), is an upright seated position that allows for the opening of the hamstrings, while simultaneously strengthening the back muscles. With modifications, it is accessible to complete beginners and people with mobility issues.

Pose Detail

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1
Assume a seated position with your legs together and extended in front of you. Place your hands on the floor next to your hips.
Step 2
Flex your feet, ensuring that your heels are extended and actively engage your thighs. Press your sitting bones firmly into the ground.
Step 3
Draw your lower belly inward and upward, activating your core muscles.
Step 4
Slide your shoulder blades backward and downward along your spine. Allow the bottom of your shoulder blades to draw closer to each other while expanding your collarbones.
Step 5
Gently bring your chin slightly back and downward, while keeping the base of your neck relaxed.
Step 6
Maintain this pose for 5 to 15 breaths. Continue to engage your abdominal muscles to sustain the posture.

Benefits and Contraindications


Stretches hamstrings, calves, heels, arms, and shoulders

Relieves lower back tension

Strengthens back muscles

Improves posture


Low back injury

Wrist injury

Photo poses in different angles

Modifications, Props & Tips

Try to keep the natural curves of your spine:

  • Notice if your lower back is rounding out, engage the abdominal muscles to maintain length in the spine.
  • Conversely try to avoid over-arching the lower back and lifting the chest too much. Think about bringing the lower ribs towards each other so they are not flaring out.

Frequently Asked Questions


  • Sit against a wall. Gently press the lower back, shoulders, and back of the head against the wall. Stay in the pose for several breaths.

Iana Varshavska
Iana Varshavska
Website administrator

A digital marketer in love with yoga and everything that goes along with it. In 2021, her huge passion for yoga led her to yoga teacher trainings. After successfully completing her studies, Iana received her Yoga Alliance U.S. certification, left the corporate IT world and devoted herself to the development of Yanva. To be able to create the best online yoga space for yoga enthusiasts like her, Iana is constantly learning and improving her skills in various aspects of yoga philosophy, anatomy and biomechanics. Since 2021, she has continued to attend various types of teacher training, including yoga therapy, gives online and offline classes, and conducts local workshops for people who want to learn more about yoga. At the moment, Iana continues to work on her personal practice, improving her hand balancing skills, as well as developing her own training programs.