Stretch and release tight hips and relieve tension and stress with this beginner variation of Cow-Face Pose.
Tight hips can be a big contributor to chronic back pain and injury. The mobility of our hips is closely related to our overall balance and mobility, so keeping your hips functional and flexible is important for overall good health. Unfortunately, many of us in today’s world spend far too much time in a seated position, which leads to hip tightness and dysfunction. Strengthening and loosening your hips can help to alleviate chronic back pain and knee pain, improve posture, increase circulation, and generally help you feel more grounded and balanced.
Personally, my hips are my most challenging aspect when it comes to flexibility, so I love any and all hip opening poses – including this marvelous stretch – Cow-Face Pose (Gomukhasana). This deep hip stretch will help to loosen tight hips and improve mobility and posture – as well as releasing stress and anxiety. The full pose also helps to stretch and open the chest and shoulders as well as the upper arms.
The video below shares a simple demonstration of a beginner version of Cow-Face Pose that focuses especially on stretching the hips and thighs to restore functional movement and release tension and stress.
This is also a great variation for those with neck or shoulder problems who have trouble doing the full version of the pose:
(Can’t see the video? Watch it here…)
Please note that the version shown in the video above is a beginner variation that focuses more on the hips. For the full pose, you will bring one arm up beside your head, and the other down by your ribs, then bend your arms behind your back so that you can hook your fingers together between your shoulder blades. This is more of a complete stretch for both your upper and lower body. (See directions for the full pose here.)