Cow face pose stretches the hips, shoulders, ankles, thighs, armpits, triceps and chest. It simultaneously stretches the top and bottom of both sides of the body, helping correct posture and returning balance to the mind, body and spirit.
The pose is named after the image it creates from the body - that of a cow's face. The crossed legs represent the cow’s snout and mouth and the arms are the cow’s ears. The torso makes the cow’s nose.
This pose should not be practiced by people with shoulder, knee or hip injuries. If the hips are very tight, it is recommended to support them with a blanket or a pillow. Lifting the hips above the level of the knees will reduce stress and discomfort in the hips, knees and back. If it is not possible to clasp the hands behind the back, it is recommended to use a strap to ease the strain.