Marjaryasana also known as the cat pose or cat stretch is a relaxing pose that helps relieve stress and pent up tension in your back, spine and neck. This asana helps to stretch the spine, beat lower back pain, strengthens the torso and provides a gentle massage to the nerves leaving the spinal column. It also helps open up your chest — helping you breathe better and helps to maintain the proper functioning of the abdominal organs. If you need that little bit of pampering after a tiring day at work, this asana is for you.
Steps to do the pose:
Position yourself on your hands and your knees. Make sure your legs are directly below your pelvis and your hands are directly below your shoulders. Keep your head in a neutral position with your eyes looking at the floor. Now exhale and round your spine towards the ceiling. Make sure you do not change the position of your hands or raise your hips. Lower your head at the neck gently (leave it loose). You should feel a stretch in your back. If you feel pain, stop. Hold this position for about five counts.
Now, inhale and come back to the starting position. Next, bend your back in the opposite direction, driving your navel to the floor. Point your head gently upwards. You will feel a stretch in your spine. Hold this position for a few counts, and come back to the starting position. You can do this as many times as you feel comfortable. About five times should help you feel better.
Tip: Do not do this pose if you have a spine or knee injury.