As a basic-intermediate level seated yoga posture, Gomukhasana helps open the shoulders and hips resulting in a greater range of motion. Derived from the Sanskrit word Go (meaning cow), Mukha (meaning face), and Asana (meaning pose). Thus, the Cow Face Pose is a posture in which the lower limbs resemble the face of a cow.
The practice of Gomukhasana with accompanying breathing exercises stretches the body parts and releases deep muscles allowing the body to overcome the negative effects of stress and improves posture due to an intense focus on the lifting of the spine. Stretching and strengthening the core muscles of the body, the physical benefits of cow face pose are myriad and miraculous.
Let’s take a look at the steps, useful tips, and the resulting health benefits of Gomukhasana.
1. Start this yoga posture in a seated position with feet planted on the ground and knees in bent position.
2. Rest the outer side of the right leg on the floor and right foot on the outside of the left hip.
3. Cross the left leg over the right thigh and locate the left foot on the outer edge of the right hip.
4. Focus your attention on lifting the spine throughout the pose
5. Take the right arm up, bend the elbow, and place the hand behind the back.
6. Take the left arm behind from the side. Attempt to interlock the fingers of both the hands.
7. Breathe and stay in this pose for 30 seconds.
Helpful Tips For Practicing the Pose With Correct Alignment:
1. The knees should be stacked in front. Keep the feet symmetrical on each side.
2. The heels must be touching the hips.
3. For relaxation, fold over the thighs, bring your head to rest on ground and hands in front.
4. If you face difficulty in clasping the hands behind the back, hold a yoga strap in your hand.
Take a look at the health benefits of Gomukhasana:
1. Focus on the Hips: The posterior becomes a depot of stress and anxiety. The Cow-Face posture and its modifications assist in stretching and the opening of the hip muscles that further alleviate stress, pain, and the discomfort experienced.
2. Flexible Back: In the Gomukhasana, the practitioners are encouraged to sit tall and lift the spine throughout the pose while breathing deeply. As the individual maintains the elongation of the spine, the surrounding back muscles get a good stretch that further helps in improving the posture. A good posture keeps the bones and joints in correct alignment, reduces pressure on the ligaments, holding the spine, prevents a backache, and more.
3. Empowers Body Organs: Owing to the strong engagement of the ankles, thighs, triceps, deltoid in performing the posture, the Cow-Face Yoga Asana provides strength and power to these areas thus enhancing their functionality. Also, as the chest and arms are strengthened it gives you a toned, and sculpted look.
4 Higher Breathing Capacity: One of the major benefits of cow-face pose is attaining a higher breathing capacity. The improved posture translates into more space in the chest cavity and expansion of the lungs, leading to greater breath control and oxygen intake. With more oxygenation, the body can create more white blood cells and hushes the noises of the brain as well.
5. Aligns the Sacral and Anahata Chakra: Practice the Gomukhasana regularly for activating the Svadhisthana (sacral) and Anahata (heart) Chakra. The fourth chakra ‘Anahata’ is associated with balance, calm, and love while the second sacral chakra represents feelings of creativity and emotional responses. The power of Gomukhasana in activating these two chakras makes it a powerful pose to practice.
6. Decompresses Lower Spine: Our lower back has to suffer a lot owing to the inactivity and wrongful ways of sitting. The modified practice of Cow-Face Pose, in which the person folds forward and rests the forehead on the ground leads to a calming decompression of the lower back.
7. Healthy abdominal muscles and organs: The Gomukhasana works on the abdominal muscles and organs, thus aiding in healthy functions of the body. With toned abs and stimulated organs, lead a life of well-being.
In this pose, develop a strong mind-body connection and overall health.