What is the cobra stretch?

The cobra stretch is similar to the sphinx stretch, however, instead of performing the stretch on your forearms it is done on your hands.

Set up

  1. Begin by lying face-down on the floor with your legs extending behind you, hip-width apart. Keep your arms at your sides and your chin on the mat.

  2. Bring your hands up and rest them under your shoulders with elbows pressing back.

  3. Press your hands into the floor and lift your head and chest off the floor. Tilt head back and shoulders down.



  1. Strengthens the spine. It warms the spine and helps to rebalance the natural curve of your lower back.

  2. Stretches chest, shoulders and the abdominal wall. This pose opens the chest and strengthens the core.

  3. Calms the mind. The stretch can be a relaxing move when it is performed properly.

Please do this pose with caution. Ask your physician or physical therapist if cobra pose is okay for your back.

Learn more about treatment options for neck and back pain at OrthoIndy