Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

Understanding The Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s Pose!

Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose was used as a meditative pose by the yogi Gorakhnath who had been a very renowned Yogi from India. This pose is named after him.

To perform the pose, the practitioner needs a lot of flexibility of the leg muscles. It may take months to loosen the leg muscles to achieve the final Gorakhasana.

Although, it looks easy to perform but it takes a lot of practice to get into the final pose let alone holding the pose for a longer duration.

Beginners can start with practicing The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose gradually and not force them into the asana as preparatory stretches are to be performed to loosen the leg muscles initially.

Advanced practitioners can try to hold the asana for few breaths initially and then gradually with constant practice can increase the duration for which Gorakhasana can be held.

Gorakhasana should be included in your daily yoga practice.

Technique Of Practicing Gorakhasana Or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s Pose

  • To practice Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, sit with the legs stretched out in front of the body on the floor or on the yoga mat.
  • Bend the knees, take hold of the feet and place the soles together while getting into the pose.
  • Draw the heels up to the perineum while getting into Gorakhasana.
  • While getting into The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, raise the heels while keeping the balls of the feet on the floor.
  • Place the hands behind the buttocks with the fingers pointing backward while practicing the pose.
  • Lower the body forward until the feet becomes vertical while practicing Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.
  • Make sure that your knees should remain on the floor while practicing the pose.
  • Do not strain yourself while you are in Gorakhasana.
  • Cross the wrists in front of the navel.
  • Hold the left heel with the right hand and the right heel with the left hand while practicing the pose.
  • Straighten the spine and face forward and fix your gaze on the eye center while practicing Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.
  • Perform nasikagra drishti at the same time.
  • This is the final Gorakhasana.
  • Beginners should try to stay in this position for 5-10 minutes or until your legs and feet start feeling discomfort.
  • Advanced practitioners should stay in this pose for 15-20 minutes or for as long as you can.

Breathing Pattern To Be Followed While Practicing Gorakhasana Or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s Pose

  • Inhale deeply while bending your legs with each other while getting in Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.
  • Maintain a constant breath while you are in the pose. Keep inhaling and exhaling deeply while being in Gorakhasana.
  • Exhale deeply once or twice after releasing the pose.

Preaparatory And Follow Up Poses To Be Practiced With Gorakhasana Or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s Pose

Preparatory Poses:. The various preparatory poses to be practiced before Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose are Dandasana or The Staff Pose.

Follow Up Poses: The various follow up poses or Pranayamas to be practiced after Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose are Anulom Vilom or The Alternate Nostril Breathing, Kapalbhati Pranayama, Vajrasana or The Diamond pose, Uttanasana or The Standing Forward Bend Pose, Balasana or The Child Pose and Dhanurasana or The Bow Pose.

Benefits Of Practicing Gorakhasana Or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s Pose

  • Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose is the easiest and most comfortable of the meditation postures. It can be utilized without ill effect by persons who are unable to sit in the more difficult meditation postures.
  • It facilitates mental and physical balance without causing strain or pain.
  • It is good for practice of meditation and pranayama.
  • Gorakhasana is the easiest alternative for those who have tight hips and cannot sit in advanced postures like Padmasana.
  • The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose brings a sense of calm and peace through your mind and body.
  • Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose helps in relaxing your brain.
  • Your back becomes stronger and steadier. With regular practice of the pose.
  • It gives your knees and ankles a good stretch.
  • It helps in broadening of chest and collar bones
  • Your body alignment is improved with regular practice of Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.
  • Practicing Gorakhasana helps elongate your spine.
  • While practicing The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, you will feel the stress, tension and anxiety melting from your body.
  • It helps in balancing the mind, increases the power of concentration, and induces physical and mental relaxation quickly. The thinking process becomes very clear and precise with regular practice of Matsya kridasana or The Flapping Fish Pose.
  • Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose refreshes and rejuvenates you and also relieves you of stress and mild depression.
  • The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose helps in increasing flexibility during difficult situations.

Precautions And Contraindications While Practicing Gorakhasana Or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s Pose

  • Avoid practicing Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose if you have hip and knee injuries, or if they are both inflamed.
  • People with slipped disc problem should practice Gorakhasana very carefully.
  • You can use cushioning to make yourself comfortable while practicing The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.
  • Do not practice the pose if you do not feel comfortable during the practice.
  • Do not over do Gorakhasana pose if you feel pain in your body.
  • Start the practice mildly and then increase the repetitions as per your capacity.
  • If you have any doubts about your condition, consult a physician before practicing The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose and always practice asana under the supervision of a trained yoga expert.
  • Do not over exert yourself while practicing Gorakhasana. Do not push yourself beyond the limits. Go only as far as your body allows.
  • It is most beneficial when you stay aware of the stretches while practicing Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.

Tips While Practicing Gorakhasana Or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s Pose

  • Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose is a relaxing posture which may be practiced after extended periods of sitting in siddhasana or padmasana.
  • It is difficult to hold Gorakhasana pose for long periods of time unless the knees are close to the ground or on the ground. If your knees do not touch the ground, most of the body weight is supported by the buttocks and backache develops. So, you must try to touch your knees on the ground while practicing the pose.
  • Beginners can are not able to perform Gorakhasana can practice the same by sitting cross legged with a belt or cloth tied around the knees and lower back.
  • Make sure that you hold the spine upright while practicing The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.
  • Concentrate on the eye center and try to equalize the weight on the right and left side of the body while practicing the Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.
  • While holding Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, place the hands on the knees in Chin or Jnana mudra to derive maximum benefits from the asana.
  • You can also sit with your back against a wall for the back support initially while practicing Gorakhasana.
  • Get into Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose to find peace. Get on to the ground and sit quietly. As you slow and deepen your breath, you will feel the anger and frustration leaving your body slowly.
  • To perform The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, the muscles of the legs and feet need to be slowly stretched over a period of time.

Gorakhasana Or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s Pose Variation

Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose is a difficult asana and needs extreme flexibility of the leg muscles. The muscles should be stretched slowly over a period of months to achieve this final pose.

  • It is an advanced form of Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, where the heels of the feet are brought to the front and kept near the navel.
  • While practicing Gorakhasana, the toes touch the ground and support part of the body weight.
  • The knees too touch the floor while you are in The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.
  • Bring the hands closer and cross the wrists to touch your heels with the fingers while practicing this pose.
  • The right fingers should be over the left heel and the left fingers over the right heel while you are practicing this variation of Gorakhasana or The Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose.
Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: September 28, 2017

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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