Cat Cow pose is a simple yoga pose and provide great benefits. It opens up the lungs for better breathing. Sankrit name for cat cow pose is Marjaiasana. Marjay means cat and asna meaning posture. Other name is Bitilasana. Bitil means cow and asna means pose. So modern cat cow pose is the combination of Marjaiasana and Bitilasana. Cat and cow pose stretches the lower spine, back and hip muscles. They also opens the lungs and chest that allows breathing to be easier.
Cat and cow pose consist of moving the spine from a rounded position to an arched position. Hence Cat Cow pose good for spine. It is a very basic motions but it is enormously beneficial in preventing back pain and maintaining a healthy spine, especially if you spend a lot of time sitting. Similar to other yoga poses, each movement in cat cow pose is done in conjunction with either an inhalation or exhalation.
Steps to perform cat cow pose
1) Start by kneeling down on your hands and knees. Gaze at a point on the floor about three feet in front of you. This is the starting posture. Ensure your knees are in line with your wrist and elbows and shoulders should be perpendicular to the floor.
2) In the next step, inhale and slowly curve your spine towards ceiling. Drop your head towards the floor and try to touch chin to the chest. Ensure to keep your arms and legs perpendicular to the floor. This completes the cat pose.
3) Now Exhale and slowly bring your spine back to the starting position and gaze to original spot.
4) In the next step inhale and lift your chest and tailbone towards the ceiling and curve your back towards the floor. Lift your head up but ensure not to force it into the back. Choose a spot at the distance and fix your gaze. Make sure your arms and knees are still perpendicular to the ground. This finishes the cow pose.
5) Now exhale and slowly bring your spine back to starting position and fixing your gaze to the original position.
6) Repeat cat and cow pose 10-15 times.
Health Benefits of cat and cow pose
1) Main focus of cat cow pose is on back and spine. So it provides a good Stretch to the spine, back, abdomen and hip muscles.
2) It stimulates organs including gastrointestinal tract
3) Cat cow pose opens up the lungs and chest. Hence aids breathing.
4) Cat Cow pose good for spine
5) Helps in relieving lower back pain.
Modifications & Variations
1) Cat and Cow poses are simple kneeling poses that do not have much of the variations. If you would like to deepen the pose, you can curve or round your back even more during the poses. This can increase the stretching benefits.
2) If you are suffering from wrist pain and are unable to bear the body weight on your wrists during the pose, you can drop down to your elbows and place your forearms on the floor
3) If you have neck pain, keep your head in a neutral alignment during the poses and avoid raising or lowering your head.
4) To avoid knee pain, you can roll up a yoga mat or some cushioning and place it under your knees for support.
1) If you experience wrist pain during the Cat and Cow poses, modify the pose by following the steps described above.
2) If you have knee pain or injury, avoid the poses for longer duration.
3) Avoid the poses if you have recent back injury or experience back pain.
Over to you:
Cat Cow pose should be included in daily Yoga routine. It will help you to keep your spine healthy and to delay the aging. If you have something to share, you are welcome to right your comments below. Here are some of the useful posts you must read.