Yoga Pose of the Day — Gomukasana ~ Cow’s Head pose (legs only version)

March 27, 2012

Gomukasana ~ Cow’s Head
Have a strap near by, before beginning.

From a seated position, with legs outstretched n front of you, breathe in and breathe out, allowing your weight to sink down and your pelvis to drop. Relax, breathe and feel the sensations in your body. Cross your right leg over your left, drawing the foot of your right leg towards the ground beside your left hip. Take a few nice deep breaths and see about releasing the weight in your right leg, and letting it sink down on top of your left leg. Breathe in and ground your pelvis, evenly on the floor. ….. Stay here a few moments, getting a feel for dropping your body weight and releasing the hips…… Breathe and relax…… When you feel ready extend the right leg out to meet the left and give your legs a little shake out. Next try the same stretch with the left leg; bending your left knee, draw the left foot up and over the right leg, bringing the foot beside the right hip on the floor, so the leg looks almost triangular in front of you, with the knee pointing forwards or thereabouts. Breathe in and out,…. and feel the ground beneath your bottom. See how it feels to let your legs release every time you exhale, so that the leg drops, and releases, and drops and releases. Stay here a bit….. and feel the sensations of you body, and your breath. This might be as far as you wish to go today, and if so that’s great! See about trying it again on each side and breathing in and out…explore the pose a little and see what you notice. Llet the arms relax here, so place them where ever they feel supportive and good for you — we’ll add the arm posture in next weeks pose.

If you would like to take this pose a step further, we can see what it might be like to bend at both knees and bring the legs to each side of the hip. ….Take both legs out front and lengthen them, give them a little shake out if it feels good. Bend softly at both knees and place your feet on the floor, see about sliding your right leg under your left and bending at the knee, moving your right foot towards the side of your left pelvis, keeping your sit bones in contact with the ground, as much as possible, see about bending your left knee, and letting it lay over top of the right leg, and then bringing your left foot beside your right hip on the ground. If this feels like too much at any time return to one straight leg, and one bent…and return to breath awareness and dropping…. remember it’s about your experience in the pose, your dropping, releasing and feeling, not about how it looks, so let any attachment to that go. If this pose feels okay, see about breathing in it and dropping the legs a little more with each exhale. You may notice the knees can align with each other and overlap, so they make a triangular shape in front of you. They may not, and that’s perfectly normal, take the feet and the legs to a position where they feel a stretch and are still able to drop and release. Breathe deeply, and let your body weight drop and sink into the pose. If you are feeling quite uncomfortable or strain in the joints, see how it might be to comer back to lengthening one leg out. Close your eyes a moment if you wish and be curious about how it feels…. can you drop more, where may you be holding tension?… can it let go?… Breathe …..When you feel ready slowly release the top leg (left) from the posture, and bring the foot back onto the floor, keeping the knee softly bent, then release the right leg and bring that foot back to the floor, keeping the knee bent as well. Extend both legs and give them a little shake.

Remember with challenging poses, it not about how the end pose looks, it’s about how mindful you are in the process — focus on breathing and releasing tension, no matter how the posture looks.
cow's head pose
Alyssa Huntley

(btw – that’s not me in the picture )


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: