How to do a standing backbend. Hi, I'm Tanya Eberhardt, and this is how to do a standing backbend. A standing backbend will improve your proprioception, your balance, the muscle endurance of your low-back muscles, and stretch your abdominal muscles. Ideally, for the standing backbend you'll want to have your feet hip width apart, and the hands shoulder width apart. However, if you're new to the pose, start with your legs out really, really wide -- wider than hip width apart. Clasp your thumbs, and look up at the fingers. Bend your knees, and slowly lead with the fingers, falling back. You want to catch yourself, and bend the elbows just a little bit just to catch that fall. Then, straighten the elbows and come into your full backbend. You want to make sure that you have a spotter for the first few until you feel comfortable and prepared to take that backbend from standing position.