Cat and Cow Pose / Marjariasana and Bitilasana

are considered as easy postures but they do offer great benefits as, for example, they stretch and depress the spinal cord, allow an easy breathing and improve flexibility.

Description

Kneel on the floor, with your legs hipwide open. Bend forwards and come on your fours with your knees below your hips, your arms straight and right under your shoulders. The hands are placed flat on the floor, the fingers are slightly open and showing to the front. The back is straight and the head is in line with the spinal cord. This is the basic position.

Now your start with a deep inhale and raise up your head, stretching your throat and at the same time depressing your spinal cord. Your abdomen is completely expanded, the shoulders are relaxed. With an exhale you lower your head so the chin is close to your throat and you arch up your spinal cord as much as you can. Exhale all air and bring your navel inside and towards the spinal cord.  Arms and legs still in same basic position.

These two poses you can do as often as you like and as slow as you like. You can even stay in each position for e.g. 3 breathing cylces and then go to the counter pose and stay for the same breathing cycle.

Benefits: These poses improve the flexibility of your back and your neck. They allow an easy breathing, relax your shoulders, hips and spine. It may give relieve from menstrual pain, e.g. cramps. There are no real contra-incidations, if you listen as always to your body and do not overstrain.