Gomukhasana commonly called Cow Face Pose in English is a sitting pose. The Sanskrit name Gomukhasana is derived from three words, the first, Go, which means cow, the second, Mukha, which means face or mouth and the third, Asana, which means posture. The Sanskrit word Go also means Light, hence the name Gomukhasana can also be understood as an asana representing the Divine Light in the head. In this asana, the whole body seems to have the shape of a cow’s face, the thighs and calves take a broad shape at one end and narrowing at the other. This asana gives intense stretch to the limbs and back and strengthens the muscles of the back and chest. It also presents several other benefits of Gomukhasana, but first, let’s start by knowing the steps to follow to practice Gomukhasana.
Steps to practice Gomukhasana (Cow Face Pose)
It is very important to know the proper alignment of the body in an asana to avoid the formulation of any type of injury and get the maximum benefits of asana. Here are the steps to follow to practice Gomukhasana properly:
Starting Position: Dhyana Virasana (Hero’s Meditation Pose)
- First sit in Dhyana Virasana
- Relax the body. Take 3 deep deep breaths.
- Stretch the left arm to the side and fold it behind the back.
- Stretch your right arm over your head and fold it over your right shoulder.
- Keep the back of the left hand in contact with the spine while the palm of the right hand should rest against the spine.
- Clench your fingers with both hands behind your back.
- Keep the elbow up behind the head in a posture in which the head is against the inside of the raised arm.
- The spine should stay upright and head upright.
- Keep your eyes closed and stay in the same position for a minute or a few seconds.
- Then loosen your hands, straighten your legs and relax the body.
- Then repeat the operation keeping the left knee above and the left arm above the left shoulder.
It is recommended to practice Titli Asana (butterfly pose) and Adho Mukha Svanasana (dog pose facing down) after practicing Gomukhasana as they become effective.
Precautions for Gomukhasana (Cow Face Pose)
Below you will find the precautions for Gomukhasana to keep a safer practice:
- Avoid forcing the body beyond the limits as this could cause back pain or spinal injuries.
- Consult a yoga coach, if you are a beginner, because this asana requires a lot of flexibility.
- Do not overload your body if you are obese. Practice it according to the comfort level of the body.
- People suffering from any of these conditions should avoid doing this asana: shoulder, neck or joint pain, migraine or spinal disorders.
Benefits of Gomukhasana (Cow Face Pose)
The benefits of Gomukhasana for health that can be experienced gradually with regular practice are as follows:
- Excellent for inducing relaxation.
- Beneficial to cure sexual ailments.
- Improves the functioning of the kidney.
- Induces the flow of energy and refreshes the body.
- Improves body posture by opening the chest area.
- Useful for getting rid of stress, tension, fatigue and anxiety.
- Relieves back pain, sciatica, rheumatism, arthritis and joint pain.
- Relieves cramps in the legs and strengthens the leg muscles.
- Frozen shoulder treatment and useful to eliminate the general stiffness of the shoulders and the neck.
Stay healthy, stay strong and get the best out of life.