Learn Yoga with the Cat Pose

Edited by HealthNut, Eng, VisiHow

Cat Pose is sometimes known by its Sanskrit name Marjaryasana, where Marjari means cat. The pose itself is a relatively simple one, which most people with experience in some of the more basic hands and knees poses, for example, Table Pose, should have no problem mastering in a short amount of time. The pose helps to stretch out the back of the chest area and your neck and will also give you a gentle massage on your spinal cord and the organs in your stomach if you can master the pose.

However, it is recommended that you do not attempt this pose if you have any previous injuries to your neck. If you want to try it, be sure to keep your head lined up with your chest the whole time so you don't aggravate any injuries you have.

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What equipment will you need to get started?

  • Although this pose can be performed anywhere, due to the pressure that will be on your knees during this pose it is highly recommended you have a yoga mat.
  • Some stretchy yoga trousers or leggings.
  • A baggy shirt or a vest which allows for maximum arm movement while attempting the pose.

Cat Pose Step-by-Step:

  1. 1
    Follow our article on how to warm up before yoga.
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  2. 2
    To begin get down onto your hands and knees and get into Table Pose
    Ensure that your knees are below your hips. Your wrists, shoulders and elbows should all be aligned and lying perpendicular to the floor. Keep your head in a neutral position with your eyes facing down and looking at the floor.
    Learn Yoga with the Cat Pose 60881.jpg
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  3. 3
    On your next out breath arch your back upwards towards the ceiling
    Ensure that your shoulders and knees stay in the same position. Next, relax your head so that it faces down towards the floor. Make sure that you don't force your chin into your chest, as this creates tension in the neck and can cause injury.
    Learn Yoga with the Cat Pose 49034.jpg
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  4. 4
    When you next breathe in, bring your back down to the neutral Table Pose once again on your hands and knees
    Learn Yoga with the Cat Pose 38253.jpg
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  5. 5
    Follow our article on how to cool down after yoga.
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Variations on this pose:

  • If you are creating a yoga sequence using this pose then it is most often paired with the Cow Pose to allow a flowing and gentle breathing sequence. You can also move from this pose into other kneeling poses such as Table or onto a harder pose such as the Plank Pose.
    Learn Yoga with the Cat Pose 58349.jpg
  • If you find it difficult to keep your back rounded properly as you go into the pose, you can ask a friend or a yoga partner to place his or her hand a little above and between your shoulder blades. This should help to round out the area properly so you can make the most out of the pose.
  • You can also add a few poses before this one as part of a warm-up or cool down sequence if you would like. Poses like Child's Pose and Eagle Pose help to warm up the arms and the back, which will help with your balance and will help you to properly round out the spine as you inhale.

See our other yoga tutorials:

If you have problems with any of the steps in this article, please ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.


Article Info

Categories : Sports

Recent edits by: Eng, HealthNut

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