“The Cat and Cow poses are simple and provide great benefits, including opening the lungs for better breathing.” – Andrew Weil, M.D.
The Cat and Cow pose is one of the Yoga poses that considered as the simple postures but it helps cure stomach very effectively. Marjaiasana is the Sanskrit name of the Cat Pose. It comes from marjay meaning cat and asana meaning posture. The name of the Cow Pose, Bitilasana, comes from bitil that means cow andasana meaning posture.
Both the Cat and Cow poses stretch the lower spine, hips, back, core muscles and open the chest and lungs, which helps do the breathing easier. You should practice the Cat and Cow poses to improve posture and promote a healthy spine. You will feel very comfortable like your body stretched completely and it is also safe for pregnant women.
How to perform Cat-Cow pose
– Bend hunched the body and put your weight on hands and knees. Your knees are in line with your hips and wrists, and that your elbows and shoulders are perpendicular to the floor.
– Slowly sunken your belly, make feeling the navel pulled toward the spine, push back higher up to create tension for the spine. Lower and relax your neck and head as you breathe out.
– Hold the position for the start of Cat Pose to implement further Cow Pose, but lower your belly towards the floor. Bend your back and lift neck, look toward the ceiling as you inhale. Practice this pose with Cat Pose in a rhythmic way.
Potential health benefits
Cat-Cow Pose helps stretches muscles of the hips, back, and abdomen, stimulate organs including gastrointestinal tract, aid breathing by stretching chest and lungs and relieve lower back pain and sciatica.
A study published in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies compared the effects of yoga sessions, massage therapy, and support groups on prenatal depression. Researchers showed that Cat – Cow pose helps people to have a greater decrease in depression, anxiety and back pain compared to the support group.
Modify the pose by following the instructions above if you have difficult such as wrist pain during the Cat and Cow poses. Since you are resting on your knees during the poses, if you have knee pain or injury, you should avoid performing the poses for an extended period of time. In addition, if you experience back pain or have had a recent back injury, it is important to be cautious when performing these poses or avoid them altogether.