Kukkutasana – The Cockerel Pose
Kukkutasana or the Cockerel Pose benefits the arms and shoulders. In Sanskrit ‘kukkuta’ means a ‘cockerel’ or a ‘rooster’ and ‘asana’ means a ‘pose’. In the final position, it resembles a rooster. It is one of the postures mentioned in the hatha yoga text Hatha Yoga Pradeepika and the Gheranda Samhita.
How to do Kukkutasana (The Cockerel Pose)?
- Sit in Padmasana, the cross legged meditation pose.
- Squeeze your hands between the thighs and the calf muscles, till it touches the floor.
- Keep the hands on the floor with palms slightly spread out and pointing forward.
- Putting pressure on the palms try to raise yourself up above the ground. The entire weight of the body should be supported by the palms alone. This requires a bit of balance. With practice it can be easily achieved. In the final pose the breathing should be normal.
- Remain in the final position for as long as you are comfortable. Inhale and hold the breath while raising the body.
- Return to the ground. Exhale while lowering the body. Repeat this process few times.
- During the practice, awareness should be maintained on the breath or on maintaining the balance of the body.
For those who find this difficult, especially those with lot of fat or muscles in the legs, there is a way out. Apply oil to the legs before practicing this asana and try it out.
This asana requires good flexibility of the legs and is a difficult asana for beginners. Those suffering from high blood pressure, heart problems, prolapse, hernia or vertigo should avoid this pose. It is not advised during menstruation and during pregnancy.
Benefits of Kukkutanasa (Cockerel Pose)
- Kukkutasana strengthens the muscles of the arms and shoulders.
- It helps to broaden the chest.
- It loosens the legs.
- It helps to develop a sense of stability and balance.
- During this pose, the perineum contracts automatically, thereby strengthening the muscles there.
- Kukkutasana stimulates the Mooladhara chakra and is used for awakening the Kundalini Shakti.