DAY 23. Read to the end for your challenge/question of the day
GOMUKASANA (cow face pose)
This curiously named posture is said to look like the shape of a cow’s head (the feet are the cow’s horns). Although the posture appears very knotted, it is a wonderful way to release upper back and shoulder tension and free the area around the sacrum, buttocks and thighs. Try to focus on expanding your body within the posture.
1. Sit with your legs out in front of you. Bend your left leg under your right and place your left ankle beside your right hip. Then bend your right leg over your left so that your knees rest one above the other, ankles relaxed (this is called steer pose). Raise your left arm over your head and bend your right arm behind your back, palm facing out. Now bend your left arm so you’re your palm faces your shoulder blades. Clasp your hands together. Check that your lower back is not arching and your abdominals are gently pulled in. Keep your head centered. Repeat the pose with the left leg and right arm uppermost.
*If your hands don’t meet behind your back, dangle a belt or strap from the upper hand and catch it with the lower hand.
*If this posture hurts your knees or you find it difficult to get both knees into position, start by practicing with one leg only. Sit with your left leg stretched out in front, bend your right knee and bring your right calf over your left leg. Try to align your two knees. Swap legs.
*If you find it difficult to achieve the leg position, just concentrate on doing the arm part of the posture while kneeling, or sitting on a low stool or chair.
Day 23 challenge:
Whether you need to go with a modified version or the full cow-face pose, try it, stay in it for a few breaths and focus on what your body tells you. How you feel. How your breathing affects your muscles. Breathe into the spaces that are stretching. Focus on this breath. Do you notice anything when you focus? Share with us in the comment box below.
All participants’ names will be entered in our 30 days of yoga with hipS-sister draw Oct. 1st.