Yoga Pose Breakdown: Cow Face Pose – Gomukhasana

Sanskrit Name: Gomukhasana (go-moo-KAHS-anna)
Go= Cow
Mukha = Face
Asana = Pose

Get Started: 

  • Sit in Dandasana (Staff Pose) and bend your knees and place your feet on the floor
  • Put your left foot under your right knee to the outside of the right hip and then cross your right leg over the left, stacking your right knee on your left
  • Bring your right foot to the outside of your left hip
  • If you can, bring your heels equidistant from your hips with the right leg on top 
  • Sit evenly on your sit bones
  • Stretch your right arm out to the right (parallel to the floor) and rotate your arm internally, ensuring that your right shoulder rolls slightly up and forward
  • Round your upper back
  • Sweep your arm behind your torso and tuck your forearm in the hollow of your lower back, parallel to your wait with the right elbow against the right side of your torso
  • Roll your shoulder back and down and then work on getting your forearm up your back, parallel to your spine 
  • Stretch your left arm straight forward and turn your palm up as you stretch the arm toward the ceiling, turn the palm facing down
  • Lift through your left arm and bend the elbow and reach for the right hand
  • If you can, hook your fingers or use a strap
  • Widen through your collarbones and roll your shoulders down your spine

Benefits: This pose stretches the ankles, hips, thighs, shoulders, armpits, triceps and chest. 

Contradictions: If you have serious neck or shoulder problems, do not practice this pose.

Know Your Asana: From pose, lean forward and lay your torso down on the inner top thigh if you have the flexibility. Also an option to use a strap. 

Photo Cred: iStock