Gomukhasana Yoga Pose: You surely wonder why the yoga pose – gomukhasana is named such instead of just crossed legs and cross-tied elbows or anything of that sort. Well, if you keenly watch the pose, you will definitely be able to notice how the crossed legs look more like the lips. Additionally, the cross-bent elbows, one up and another down look like the ears of the cow, thus it is named the Cow Face Pose.
If we look at the nomenclature of the word, it is derived from the Sanskrit word. In Sanskrit, ‘Go’ means cow and the ‘Mukha’ means face. Therefore, gomukha-asana’s (go-moo-KAHS-anna) literal translation goes Cow Face Pose.
The Step-by-Step Instructions to achieve the Gomukhasana Yoga, Cow Face Pose:
The first step of the asana is to sit in the Dandasana or the Staff Pose. After that, start bending your knees till your foot lies flat on the floor and your leg is in a V-shape. Then, slowly slide the left leg below your right leg under the knee towards the right side of your hips.
Now, coming to the right leg, slide it towards the left hip. Also, try to keep both the heels at the same distance from the hips. Moreover, while your right leg is over the left leg, you will need to tug your right leg closer to your hips. Most importantly, you need to sit evenly on the sitting bones.
Coming to the second step, this will need you to have a calm mind and a meditative posture for the maximum benefit. Take a deep breath and stretch your arms towards the right, positioning your arms parallel to the floor. Next, rotate your hand anticlockwise. This will result in your thumb facing the ground and your palm to facing opposite to your view.
After that, rotate the hand another turn till your thumb faces the wall behind you. Hence, your palm will be facing towards the ceiling. As a result, your right shoulder will be turned and will be slightly upwards and forward. This will also mildly push your shoulder blades.
Next, release your breath slowly and then sweep your arm to your back, behind your torso and then place your forearm in the hollow of your lower back. As a result, your palm will be facing the wall behind you and it will stay parallel to your back.
Now, our right elbow is on the right side of your torso. The next step is to slowly roll the shoulder back and bring it to the original position while pulling your forearm backward making it parallel to your spine. The resulting posture will have your hand placed comfortably between your shoulder blades. The challenge is to keep your elbow firmly on your torso and ensure that it doesn’t slip away.
Inhale. Take a deep breath and stretch your left hand this time. sweep your left arm in front of you, keep it straight and forward, pointing the wall in front of you. Hence, your arms will be parallel to the ground. Slowly turn your palm to a full 180 degrees making it face the ceiling.
After that, take another deep breath and move your hands up. Stretching the arms straight and keeping the palm turned back, make sure you keep everything straight. Bending your elbow toward the back will result in a position in which your left hand will be stretched to your back and will be placed on your left shoulder blade. Now, try to touch your right hand with that of your left hand.
If possible, if it doesn’t hurt you try to hook your fingers of both the hands together to keep the position tight.
The next step is to work towards perfecting the posture. While being on the position of step 3, bend the left elbow toward your head in an attempt to make it straight.
Then, pull your hands which are on your shoulder blades, towards the ground. Lift your chest while making your backbone completely straight. Make sure to keep your left arm right beside the left side of your head.
Stay completely still in this pose for one minute, keep breathing firmly. After a minute, release your legs and arms to a normal position and then repeat the pose. However, this time, you will need to change the sides. Reverse the position, keeping in mind that whichever leg is on top, the same side arm will be lower.
Benefits of The Gomukhasana Yoga Pose or Cow Face Pose:
- Stretches our hips and gives us the flexibility
- Makes our ankles, thighs, shoulder, chest, and triceps stronger
- Relieves knee pains
- Hardens your abdominal muscles
- Strengthens your back and spine
- Improves blood circulation
- Makes the hip joint stronger
- Tones the muscles of your body
- Improves our body’s natural posture
- Cures sexual ailments by stimulating blood flow to the lower part of the body.
- Beneficial for people with diabetes, the posture helps in stimulating the kidneys. Thus, improving their function.
Contradictions of Gomukhasana Yoga Pose:
- People with sciatica should not practice it under no guidance
- If you suffer from serious neck issues and shoulder pain, this yoga asana should be avoided at all cost
- Pregnant women should not fold their legs forward if doing for the first time without guidance.
- People with serious knee problems should not practice this yoga pose as it can worsen the problems.
- If you suffer from back problems, seek the guidance of a yoga instructor for supervision.
If you are a beginner, do not jump to the asana immediately as it can result in airlocks and even worse situations. Therefore, start with some stretching exercise which will activate your muscles and loosen up your body. If it is difficult for you to keep your pelvic bones evenly on the floor, you can use a blanket. Fold a blanket and put it under your hips. This will result in your hips getting lifted from the floor that will help to achieve the perfect form while crossing your legs.
Practising gomukhasana yoga pose is extremely beneficial for your body, both inside out. This is one of the simplest yoga postures that you can do on a daily basis. The asana improves blood circulation in your body, so does all yoga poses. Therefore, if you are willing to improve your physical health along with your mental health, doing yoga can be extremely beneficial.
Gomukhasana Yoga Pose
Read our article on Yoga for Back Pain.
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