“Nature had not intended man to work from eight in the morning until midnight without the refreshment of blessed oblivion” ~ Sir Winston Churchill
This posture is known as Savasana, which can be translated as “Corpse Pose” (sava = corpse, asana = pose). It’s the pose in which you can relax in between the exercises and at the end of a yoga session. Although the name might sound a bit creepy, lying in the Corpse Pose is very enjoyable and refreshing. To many practitioners, it’s the highlight of the yoga session.
I’ve found out that it’s also remarkably refreshing to relax in this pose for 10 – 20 minutes when coming home after work.
Lie supine on your mat. Spread your legs a little bit and allow your toes to roll outward. Move your arms some 12 to 15 inches away from your sides. Let your palms face up (as much as possible without getting tensed forearms). Close your eyes, soften your face. Let yourself sink into the mat.
Take it easy when you come out of this pose, especially when you’ve been resting for a longer period of time. Stretch yourself gently and start making small movements with your arms and legs. Make those movements gradually bigger. When you’re ready, push yourself up to a sitting position. Now you can carry on with the next exercise or with whatever you were planning to do.
The Corpse Pose relaxes your body and mind. Relaxation allows body and mind to recover from hard work and the adverse effects of stress. Your energy will be replenished.
Using a bolster or folded/rolled up blanket
Your back may ache after you’ve been lying in the Corpse Pose for a while. If that’s the case, then place a bolster or a rolled up/folded blanket under the back of your knees (see image below). That should give you some relief. The longer you practise yoga, the more supple your body will become. So eventually you won’t be needing props anymore.
Relaxation during a yogasession
In between the exercises, you’ll generally stay in the Corpse Pose for 30 seconds to 2 minutes (of course you don’t have to rest after each and every single exercise). At the end of a yogasession, you can relax 10 minutes or more in this pose.
Refreshment in the afternoon
As I’ve mentioned earlier, lying in the Corpse Pose is remarkable refreshing when you come home after work or school. I suppose that when you’re totally relaxing this way, your brain gets to process impressions you get through the day. I don’t know if that’s really the way it works. But what I do know for sure is that it does work.