Yoga's Hardest Pose? 4 Tips for Mastering Savasana

Depending on who you are, the final pose in yoga can either be the ultimate relaxation or the greatest challenge. Savasana, also known as corpse pose, is a resting position in which a person lies on his or her back with the palms facing up and eyes closed, releasing bodily tension and creating mental space for meditation. It mimics the position we assume upon death, hence the nickname corpse pose. So what is the challenge here? Despite appearing fairly simple, many students struggle to fall into the total rest that savasana provides. Minds start racing, bodies get restless, and suddenly a 15 minute period of relaxation turns into a frenzy of thoughts about celebrity gossip or things coming up at work next week. To overcome these common challenges and really begin to reap the benefits of savasana, here are some practical tips.

 

  1. Start by Stretching

If you’re having trouble fully relaxing into corpse pose, begin by stretching your way into the position. Inhale deeply and use your breath to lengthen your body from your toes all the way to your fingertips. Exhale and relax into your savasana.

 

2.  Release Bodily Tension

Tense muscles can be a major stumbling block for resting positions such as savasana. While entering the pose, take a mental note of which areas in your body are holding tension and focus your mind on releasing them. Often, simply “asking” a muscle to release will let go of unnecessary tension and allow your body to more completely relax, enhancing the benefits of your savasana.

 

3. Focus on Your Mantra

When you feel your mind start to stray, it is helpful to have a word or phrase in mind that you can go back to in order to recollect. Regain your peace by repeating mantras such as “I am where I am meant to be,” or powerful words like “love" and “coexist”. Choose something that is meaningful to you. Use these words and phrases to turn your attention back inwards when things your thoughts begin to wander.

 

4. Pay Attention to Your Breath

Breath is the force of life, and it can help lead us in the direction we want to go. Being aware of your breath during savasana will help you to make deeper mind-body connections and achieve higher levels of consciousness. Acknowledge any destructive thoughts or feelings you may be experiencing during your inhale, and exhale to let go of them. Allow your breath to guide you through the meditative experience of corpse pose.

 

There you have it! Four simple techniques you can use to enhance your savasana and make the most of those last few minutes of yoga class.  Once you have mastered it, savasana can be a deeply relaxing and immersive experience, and it just might become your new favorite pose.

 

With love,

Elle & Anther

 

“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.” — Buddha

 

“When you realize nothing is lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” — Lao Tzu

 

Enjoy the sound of silence.” — Timothy Salter

 

“You need to empty your mind, and relax each other muscle group until you feel like you are going to melt into the floor.” — Kasie West

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