The Great Cat-Cow Hatha Yoga Pose
Article by Anmol Mehta
The Hatha Yoga pose detailed in this article is excellent for both beginners as well as advanced yogis. It is a very important yoga pose and one that should be practiced every day if possible because of the important benefits it bestows. It is a simple, but very useful technique.
This exercise is called cat-cow and it is a part of many different schools of yoga. The most important benefit of cat-cow is that it helps cleanse emotional debris that we end up accumulating in our stomach region. This debris is what creates blockages in the flow of energy throughout our system and is responsible for emotional and mental disturbances.
Cat-Cow yoga exercise helps to dissolve these blockages in our energy pathways, and thus helps, to not only resolve remnants of old emotional traumas, but also helps restore balance to the entire system.
Below you will find details of how to practice this exercise safely and correctly. In addition, all the benefits of this exercise as well as practice tips and durations are also provided.
Cat-Cow Practice Details:
A. Step-by-Step Instructions for Hatha Yoga Cat-Cow Pose:
* Come onto the floor on all fours. Make sure your hands are directly under your shoulders, about shoulder width apart and knees are directly under your hips, about hip distance apart.
* Now come into cow pose by bringing your head up, while at the same time pushing your stomach down. Your eyes should be open and you should be looking upwards, thus giving your optical nerve and eye muscles a toning massage. Inhale deeply as you come into this posture.
* Next bring your head down and your chin towards your chest as you arch your back up like a cat. Exhale fully as you come into this pose.
* Start off at a slow pace, holding each position for a few seconds or more, and then begin to move faster as you feel yourself warming up. Only go as fast as you find comfortable, moving between cow pose and cat pose.
B. Duration for Cat-Cow:
* 1 minute – 11 minutes.
* Start slowly and build up your time steadily from there.
C. Benefits of Cat-Cow:
* Clears emotional debris, thus promoting good emotional health and balance.
* Clears blockages in the energy pathways caused by unresolved emotions, thus helping energy flow to take place between the higher and lower chakras.
* Excellent exercise for your entire back and spine. Massages all 72,000 nerve junctions that lie along the spinal cord.
* Helps cure whip-lash.
* Great for the optical nerve and eyes. Gives you sparkly eyes.
* Good to regulate and balance the thyroid gland.
* Good for your arms and shoulders.
* Good for your digestive system.
D. Practice Tips for Cat-Cow:
* You can do this exercise, by either holding each position for a comfortable duration of time as you move between the poses, or doing the exercise by rapidly moving between the poses.
* Cat-Cow is a terrific exercise to start off your yoga session with. It warms up the cerebrospinal fluid which is absolutely essential to charge in order to get the most out of your yoga workout.
* The biggest mistake that yogis make, is that they rock back and forth. You should simply by arching your back and moving you head as indicated.
* All the breathing should be done through the nose.
So as you can see from the above, this yoga pose is truly simple to do, but at the same time has a long list of important benefits. This combination should more certainly encourage you in making Cat-Cow a regular part of your daily yoga practice.
About the Author
Anmol Mehta is a modern Yoga & Meditation master. His Free Yoga Meditation website offers popular and free Hatha Yoga Poses illustrations, e-books and videos.