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Tips on how to Do Cow Face Pose (Gomukhasana) in Yoga

Verywell / Ben Goldstein

Targets: Hips, ankles, shoulders, arms, chest

Stage: Newbie

When considering of hip openers in yoga, most image poses the place the legs are positioned vast aside. However poses like Cow Face (Gomukhasana), the place legs are introduced collectively, are additionally hip stretches, albeit ones that work musculature surrounding the pelvis otherwise.


Cow Face Pose stretches the hips, ankles, shoulders, arms, and chest—virtually each a part of your physique. It demonstrates how completely different the 2 sides of most individuals’s our bodies are; typically it is a lot simpler to carry your arms to satisfy behind your again on one facet than the opposite.

This pose might aid you right your posture and start to equalize your flexibility. It is an incredible pose for many who sit a lot of the day at work as it is going to open your hips and chest, counteracting the stoop many individuals undertake whereas sitting. It’s a calming and centering pose.

Step-by-Step Directions

Start in a seated cross-legged place. Half Lotus or Fireplace Log Pose work properly since your legs are stacked in them. 

  1. Slide your knees towards your middle line, stacking the fitting knee immediately over the left. It might be useful to come back ahead onto your arms and knees to do that. The best knee ought to be simply in entrance of the left knee. Then separate your ft and are available again to sit down between them.
  2. Deliver your left arm straight up towards the ceiling.
  3. Bend the left elbow, bringing the left hand to the again of your neck. You should use your proper hand to softly shift the left elbow towards your midline.
  4. Raise the fitting arm out to the fitting facet, bend the elbow, and produce the fitting arm up the middle of the again.
  5. Clasp arms behind your again.
  6. Draw each elbows towards the middle and preserve your head from tilting ahead by urgent the again of your head into your left arm. Breathe evenly.
  7. Launch your arms on an inhale and check out the pose with the left leg and proper arm on prime.

Frequent Errors

You should definitely preserve your backbone aligned fairly than twisted. It is best to have a straight line from the highest of your head to your tailbone. Keep away from twisting to affix your arms.

Whereas your arms are clasped, don’t stick your ribs out. Attempt to drop your tailbone to the ground and broaden your decrease again as a substitute. Additionally resist rounding your again and curving your chest inward. Unfold your collarbones as a substitute.

Modifications and Variations

Just a few slight modifications could make the pose extra snug for you as you’re employed to enhance—after which improve the problem.

Want a Modification?

Deliver a blanket, block, or bolster below your butt if that makes the pose extra snug. Use the props to degree out your seat if it is uneven (one facet of your butt larger than the opposite). 

If you’re twisting in an effort to attempt to be a part of your arms, grasp a strap fairly than power them to affix. Over time, work on transferring your arms towards one another alongside the strap.

Up for a Problem?

To deepen the pose, come right into a ahead bend whereas protecting the backbone lengthy and arms joined.

You’ll deepen the hip opening by transferring your ft additional out of your hips.

Security and Precautions

Keep away from this pose if in case you have a shoulder, neck, or knee harm. Be particularly conscious of how this pose feels in your knees and prop your self accordingly, or skip it if you cannot discover a place that does not trigger you knee ache.

Strive It Out

Incorporate this transfer and related ones into one in all these common exercises:

  • Yoga Poses to Enhance Your Flexibility
  • Hip-Opening Yoga Poses

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