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10- MIN YOGA  SESSION  BASED AROUND (LEGS OF) GOMUKHASANA (Cow's Face Pose)    (4)

Legs of Gomukhasana Session 4
FIRST EXERCISE OF SESSION (1.5 minutes)
Come into all fours position with knees under hips and hands under shoulders. Have a sense of length between your head and tailbone. Straighten one leg backwards and imagine an elongation travelling from the hip to the feet. Then lift the leg until it is in line with your trunk. Exhaling, bend the knee of this leg to bring it forwards as close to your chest as you can. Inhaling, swing the leg to the side. Exhaling, straighten the leg and swing round to pointing backwards in line with your trunk. Inhaling, adjust pelvic girdle until level with floor and have a sense of length between head and foot of lifted leg. Repeat 2 more times, then lower the leg, returning it to beside the other knee. Repeat to the other side.
SECOND EXERCISE OF SESSION (2.5 minutes)
Place 1 or 2 yoga blocks or folded towels on your yoga mat and sit with knees bent, soles of feet on the mat, about half a leg-length in front of your buttocks. Place hands on the front of knees so your fingers point towards each other, palms face the knees, trunk and arms are curved with elbows pointing sideways. Take a few breaths to encourage your spine to elongate upwards and shoulders to broaden. Move one foot to place it under the knee of the other leg. Then use your hands to help you thread this leg under the top leg until the foot is beside your hip. Gently move the foot of the top leg to the outside of the opposite hip. Encourage your knees to lower towards the floor. Have your arms relaxed by your side. Lift your shoulders, roll them backwards and then down. Keeping your shoulders down, lift arms sideways to shoulder level. Exhaling, curl your fingers inwards, making fists (thumbs on outside) and continue the movement to curl your knuckles towards your armpits – arms staying lifted and straight at shoulder level. Inhaling, encourage your arms to move away from each other. Exhaling, draw your shoulder blades towards each other (arms moving closer to each other). Inhaling, encourage your arms to move away from each other. Exhaling, draw your shoulder blades towards each other (arms moving closer to each other). Inhaling & keeping your shoulder blades drawn close to each other, uncurl your hands and draw your fingers towards your head. Exhaling & keeping your shoulder blades drawn close to each other, draw your arms downwards to your sides (you can take two breaths over this if you wish). Keep your shoulder blades drawn towards each other, relax your wrists and hold for about 5 breaths. Then relax arms. Gently unwind legs by reversing the movements of taking your legs into this position. Repeat with legs the other way around. Note: with practice you will find the position becomes comfortable with less height in the support under your buttocks.
THIRD EXERCISE OF SESSION (2 minutes)
Lie on your back with legs in the crooked position – soles of feet against the mat (feet parallel and just slightly apart), knees pointing up into the air. Place your arms on the floor beside your trunk with palms upwards. Inhaling, swing your arms along the floor as far away from your trunk as feels comfortable and at the same time straighten one leg along the floor. Exhaling, slightly lift the arm of the straight leg side and swing the arm across your head to above your other arm, moving your trunk into a twist. Inhaling, unwind your trunk, returning your arm to the floor near your head. Exhaling, swing your arms to your side, at the same time drawing your leg up to be side the other one. Repeat to the other side. Repeat 2 to 3 more times to each side.
FOURTH EXERCISE OF SESSION (4 minutes)
Lie down in a comfortable position and practise a relaxation method of your choice. You could try: As you exhale think the words “I give joy” and as you inhale think the words “I receive joy”. Remember not to rush sitting up (and then standing) after practising relaxation as it causes one’s blood pressure to fall, which can cause dizziness if one moves too quickly.