Health Benefits of Gomukhasana
- Author :
- TATA AIG Team
- Published on :
- 2 min read
Yoga is a complex and ancient Indian practice that intends to harmonise the mind, body, and soul. This practice has reached far and wide for its ability to nourish and tone one’s body holistically.
Out of the various asanas (postures), the Gomukhasana is a seated pose that helps in improving your posture. The term Gomukhasana translates to “cow face pose” because your body resembles the face of a cow when in this posture.
Let’s understand the Gomukhasana yoga pose in some detail.
What is Gomukhasana?
The Gomukhasana yoga pose has been mentioned in the 4th-century Darshana Upanishad and it is an effective and therapeutic exercise that stretches your shoulders, thighs, hips, ankles, triceps, chest, and underarms.
By regularly practising Gomukhasana, one can relieve their body of pain and stiffness by stretching the root of these aches, i.e., hips and shoulders. Performing the cow-face pose has therapeutic benefits as it releases hormones such as endorphins that induce a sense of calm and relaxation.
Let’s discover what are some of the best cow-face pose benefits to your health.
Gomukhasana Benefits for Your Health
Practising Gomukhasana can enhance one’s mental and physiological health. Here are some cow-face pose benefits:
Improves Body Posture
A sedentary lifestyle coupled with an overuse of technology has resulted in many individuals complaining of neck pain and back aches. The Gomukhasana yoga stretches the entirety of your body - shoulders and arms, ankles, hips, thighs, and your back - thereby improving your posture.
While performing the asana, almost every joint in your body is engaged, which ensures smooth blood flow and supplements your body with nutrition.
Effectively Treats Sciatica
Sciatica, also called lumbar radiculopathy, is a pain that initiates along your sciatic nerve, which extends from the back of your pelvis down the back of your thigh.
By lengthening and stretching the spine, Gomukhasana yoga can relieve and, in certain cases, even cure this pain.
Enhances Kidney Function
Maintaining kidney health is essential for an individual’s overall well-being. In addition to maintaining an active lifestyle and consuming a nutritious diet, practising Gomukhasana regularly can help improve your kidney function.
The cow-face pose benefits can mitigate the development of kidney stones. This asana also promotes frequent urination that effectively flushes out toxins and acid from the body.
Improves Sexual Performance
For a healthy sexual life, it is advised to perform Gomukhasana. This is because Gomukhasana yoga helps tighten the genital organs, thereby assisting in the production of sex hormones and boosting blood flow.
It also helps tone your thighs, calves, and hips, all of which are important for sexual performance.
Enhances Cardiovascular Health
Gomukhasana’s benefits for the heart are indicated in several studies. Practising Gomukhasana can improve an individual’s cardiovascular health and help prevent heart ailments such as heart attack, stroke, high cholesterol, etc.
This is because Gomukhasana opens up your chest muscles and improves blood circulation. It also reduces the stress on blood vessels and prevents the buildup of cholesterol and fat in our body.
Relieves Stress and Anxiety
Stress and anxiety are becoming common among individuals as expectations from life have changed. However, research indicates that exercising may help de-stress and overcome anxiety.
In this endeavour, practising Gomukhasana is an effective remedy for relaxation. It combines physical and mental practice to lower your blood pressure and heart rate, which helps an individual calm down.
One of the most important Gomukhasana benefits is that it flexes your spine and improves your range of motion. When practising this asana, you work out your thighs and the muscles in your lower body, including the quadriceps and hamstrings.
In addition to this, you also strengthen and improve the flexibility of your lower body
Gomukhasana’s benefits for the heart and overall well-being are why it is an important yoga posture. However, as with any exercise, for best results, it is important to be consistent and practise this asana regularly.
Step-by-Step Procedure of Gomukhasana
When it comes to practising yoga, there are no shortcuts. As yoga is a practice that involves your mind just as much as your body, it is important to be mindful between transitions. As with any exercise, beginners must try to follow the procedure to the best of their capabilities and trust the process to practise Gomukhasana with ease eventually.
With that in mind, here are Gomukhasana steps to get you started in the proper manner:
Step 1: Sit on the yoga mat with your back straight and legs extended before you (in Dandasana)
Step 2: Now, bend your left knee, tuck it under your right hip, and fold your right leg over your left thigh
Step 3: With a deep breath, fold your left arm behind your back such that it reaches the back of your neck and the palms are facing outwards
Step 4: Now stretch your right hand to the right side by bending your elbow and bringing your arm behind your back
Step 5: Try to touch or hold your left hand with your right by stretching it as much as you can
Step 6: Ensure that your trunk is erect and your body is leaning slightly behind. Concentrate on your breathing and stay in the position for as long as you are comfortable (ideally between 30 to 60 seconds for beginners)
Step 7: Switch the hands and hold the position
The procedure of Gomukhasana can seem complicated in the beginning; however, with regular practice, one can perform the asana with ease.
It is important to follow the Gomukhasana steps properly and be consistent with your practice if you wish to reap its benefits.
Precautions and Contraindications of Practising Gomukhasana Yoga
It is important to acquaint oneself with Gomukhasana procedure benefits and contraindications for ensuring holistic care of one’s health.
Gomukhasana precautions are essentially for individuals who:
Have undergone surgery or are injured: Individuals who have undergone surgery or have recently sustained a hip, quadriceps, knee, hamstring, shoulder, or neck injury must refrain from performing the Gomukhasana.
Are physically weak: For individuals who are working on building up their strength, it becomes exceedingly challenging to open the lower body while seated in the outside upper thighs. So, individuals with tight hips or lower back concerns must sit on a pillow or a blanket for hip support while practising the Gomukhasana.
Acknowledging Gomukhasana procedure benefits and contraindications ensures that you take progressive steps in improving your general health and well-being.
Therefore, among the Gomukhasana precautions, it is important to note that this asana expands and activates the tissues and ligaments in your upper thighs and engages different meridians of the body.
Additionally, it also stresses the pelvic floor muscles while also constraining the flow of blood to the pelvis. So, individuals who are recovering from any stress in these areas should avoid performing the Gomukhasana.
Easy Variations of Gomukhasana Yoga
It might be challenging for beginners to perform the Gomukhasana initially, so to keep any discouragement at bay, it is a good idea to start slow and make steady progress. This makes your journey more rewarding as you progressively get better.
With that in mind, here are some tips for making the Gomukhasana easier:
Use a pillow or a blanket under your buttocks to support your lower back and buttocks
To aid the overlapping of the thighs, sit on a block. This will bring your knees closer to the floor and make it easier to fold your legs.
If you cannot interlock your palms, use yoga straps or elastic bands between your hands. You can improve your flexibility by gradually reducing the distance.
Yoga is all about balance, so you must focus on the weaker side of your body to achieve equilibrium. In other words, make sure you switch hands after the first iteration of the pose.
Your head must not drop when you are attempting to hold your palms in the back. Ensure that your chin is in line with your chest and collarbone.
If it is challenging to overlap your thighs, start slowly by folding one leg at a time.
Several studies have indicated the numerous benefits of yoga on one’s health. It is a holistic practice that improves several aspects of wellness, including stress management, promoting healthy habits, and improving sleep and balance.
However, while it is essential to take care of your health, it is equally important to plan for the unforeseeable to safeguard your well-being with the help of health insurance.
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How does Gomukhasana contribute to improving cardiovascular health?
Gomukhasana’s benefits for the heart include opening up chest muscles, enhancing blood circulation, reducing stress on blood vessels and preventing the buildup of cholesterol and fat in the body. These benefits, supported by studies, make it a valuable practice for preventing heart ailments such as heart attack, stroke and high cholesterol.
Are there any variations or modifications for beginners to make Gomukhasana easier?
Yes, beginners can make Gomukhasana easier by using a pillow or blanket under the buttocks for lower back support, sitting on a block to aid overlapping of thighs, using yoga straps or elastic bands between hands if palms cannot be interlocked, and gradually reducing the distance.
Focusing on the weaker side and starting slowly by folding one leg at a time can also help.
How does Gomukhasana benefit kidney health, and how often should it be practised for optimal results?
Gomukhasana benefits kidney health by promoting frequent urination, flushing out toxins and acid from the body, and mitigating the development of kidney stones.
As with any exercise, consistency is key, but individual needs may vary, and consulting a yoga instructor or healthcare professional is advisable.
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