Corpse Pose, or Savasana as it is commonly known, is considered to be one of the hardest poses to master in yoga. Even though it may look quite simple, it’s considered difficult not because it asks you to balance, bend, or twist into shapes that many would find a challenge, but because it asks you to relax and remain completely still.
For this pose, the aim is to zone out and clear your mind while keeping your body heavy and tension free. Sounds easy right? You’d be surprised how difficult this may be.
Mastering the art of laying in a truly relaxed state can be tricky for even the most advanced yoga practitioner. You may find yourself feeling tense or you may struggle to stop your mind from wandering.
This pose is traditionally used to end a yoga session, however, it’s also a good way to start the class. Calming the body and mind to begin your practice is a great way to set the tone and create the right mindset needed for a yoga class. You can even practice this pose outside of your yoga session, as a way to deal with any stress or anxiety you may be feeling.
If you want to learn how to perfect this impactful pose, the ten steps below will guide you into a state of complete relaxation and calm.
Corpse Pose: Step-by-step Instructions
For this pose, you will need a yoga mat. You can also use a blanket which may help you to feel more comfortable and rooted if you are new to this pose.
1.Lay down on your yoga mat facing the ceiling. Allow your legs to relax and your feet to naturally fall open to the sides.
2.Position your arms to the side of your torso but ensure that you maintain distance between them and your body. Your palms should be facing upwards and you can allow your fingers to curl in if this is how they naturally rest.
3. Gently pull your shoulder blades onto your back for extra support.
4. Once your body is in this position, your main aim is to relax. Let go of any tension you are holding, including in your face, and allow your body to feel relaxed and heavy.
5. Focus your attention on your breathing if you find your mind is wandering. Let your breathing occur naturally, you don’t need to deepen it.
6. Aim to stay in this moment for 10 minutes. If you find this too long, aim for 5 minutes and gradually increase the time with every practice.
7. To exit this pose, begin to deepen your breath to slowly reawaken your body. While doing so also wiggle your toes and fingers to bring movement back into the body.
8. While still laying down, stretch your arms overhead and stretch your hands and feet to opposite sides of the room for an incredibly satisfying full-body stretch.
9. Slowly bring your knees into your chest and hug them in this position before turning on your side and resting in a fetal position. If this is uncomfortable for you, use your bottom arm as a pillow for extra comfort.
10. After a few deep breaths in this position, place your hands on your mat to help you up into a seated position.
Many people find this pose difficult as the main aim is to do nothing but relax. If you have a wandering mind or find lying still quite a challenge, these handy tips will help you:
1. Place a folded blanket over your thighs to help you feel completely rooted and relaxed. If you don’t have a blanket, you can also use a yoga block and position it just under your navel which will provide you with the same grounded feeling.
2. Block out all light by using an eye pillow. By doing this you can focus your attention on your breathing and are less likely to become distracted by your environment.
3. If it’s chilly in your room, wear a sweater or use a blanket for extra warmth. If you are distracted by how cold you are you won’t be able to fully relax.
4. You can support your neck in this position by using a folded blanket or cushion to position your forehead slightly higher than your chin. Remember that you shouldn’t feel any tension so find a position that is comfortable for you where you can feel fully relaxed.
Corpse Pose: Benefits
This pose can be difficult for many people to master as doing nothing can be tricky, especially if you have a very active mind. But if you can practice and focus your attention, this pose will become a perfect way to either start or finish your yoga practice. Just look at the benefits you’ll receive from this pose:
- This pose helps to calm your central nervous system which in return helps to improve both your digestive and immune systems.
- It also helps to calm the mind and improve your mental health. By practicing meditation, over time you will be able to settle the mind leading to fewer headaches and an increase in your energy levels.
- If you suffer from high blood pressure, regular practice of the corpse pose can help lower your levels.
- It is great for stimulating blood circulation.
- It helps to reduce stress, fatigue, depression, and anxiety.
- By allowing your body and mind to relax, this pose promotes spiritual awakening and provides you with an awareness of higher consciousness.
- This pose helps bring a deep, meditative state of rest which can help repair tissue and cells.
- It is an excellent way to ground your body and relax your muscles. This can be achieved with regular practice.
- It is very beneficial for those who suffer from asthma, constipation, indigestion, or diabetes.
- This pose also helps with concentration, as focusing on clearing your mind provides you with the opportunity to let go of what is not important.