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Gomukhasana (goh-moo-KHA-sah-nah[needs IPA]; Sanskrit: गोमुखासन; IAST: Gomukhāsana) or Cow Face Pose is an asana. This is one of the Asanas prescribed in Hatha Yoga Pradipika.
- Sit straight on the ground with legs extended in front of you.
- Now gently bend your left leg and place it under your right buttock
- Fold your right leg and place it over your left thigh.
- Place both your knees close together.
- At this level, you will be able to feel a nice stretch in your lower body and gomukhasana is great asana for Hip joint opening and stretching thigh muscles.
- Gently fold your left arm and place it behind your back
- Keep your body straight, chest up and bend your body slightly backward.
- Take your right arm over your right shoulders to reach the left hand. You might find it difficult touch both hands that are because of lack of mobility.
- Now you should be able to feel nice stretch at your shoulders, arms, trapezius, pectorals (chest muscles)
- Beginners try to hold this pose for between 10-30 seconds.
- Keep breathing slowly; concentrating on breathing with help you lower your stress level.
Technique in pictures/animation
- Stretches your hips, thighs, ankles and chest, shoulders, anterior deltoids, triceps, inner armpits and lats.
- Gomukhasana helps induce relaxation. When you feel tired, tense or worried, practicing Gomukhasana will help release the tension.
- Gomukhasana stimulates the kidneys.
- Gomukhasana is helpful in relieving ailments like diabetes, high blood pressure, and sexual malfunction.
- While practicing Gomukhasana the muscles of the lower back, buttocks and the knees are properly stretched so Gomukhasana is beneficial in backache, sciatica and rheumatism.
- Pelvic and reproductive organs are toned and massaged by regular practice of Gomukhasana.
The precautions for Gomukhasana to be kept in mind for a safer practice are given below:
- Avoid straining the body beyond the limits as it may cause back pain or spinal injury.
- Consult a yoga trainer, if you are a beginner as this asana requires a lot of flexibility.
- Do not overburden your body, if you are obese. Practice it according to the comfort level of the body.
- People suffering from any of this condition should avoid practicing this asana: shoulder, back, neck or joint pain, migraine, or spinal disorders.
Initial practice notes
Beginners usually find it difficult to get their sitting bones to rest evenly on the floor. This makes stacking the knees evenly over each other quite difficult.
This is one of the Asanas prescribed in Hatha Yoga Pradipika.