This week, I’m highlighting the yoga asana, or pose, Savasana, or corpse pose, which is more or less the English translation from Sanskrit. This pose keeps us on the floor and it begins to settle us after supported shoulder stand posture. Because the pose is symmetrical, be mindful of keeping your breath in sync with the step by step movement of the posture.
To do corpse pose, sit in the middle of your mat:
- Come to lay on your mat with your legs extended to the corners of your mat.
- Place your arms slightly away from your body, palms turned towards the sky.
- Tuck your shoulder blades under your chest by drawing them together and sliding them down your back. This will create space across you chest and help to position your shoulders comfortably.
- Slide your sacrum, or tailbone, towards your heals.
- Slightly tuck your chin, extending through the top of the head, allowing for your neck to lengthen.
- Begin to deepen your breath.
- Let go of all that no longer serves or supports you.
- Breath full breathes for as long as you’d like or need.
To come out of corpse pose, draw your knees into your chest, and roll over on to your right side before pressing yourself up to sit.
Feel free to use props in corpse pose, either a blanket to cover yourself or a bolster under your knees to help support your lower back and legs.
Some of this pose’s more specific benefits are that it relaxes and cools the body and mind.
Highlighting some of corpse pose’s Ayurvedic points to consider (I hope you figured out your dosha!):
- Vata try to cultivate stillness through grounding by placing your palms turned down on your belly.
- Pitta try to relax fully by maintaining a steady and easy connection to the breath.
- Kapha try to connect with lightness by keep the palms turned upward and allowing the breath to be deep.
Also, from the perspective of Ayurveda, if you’re one dosha, but one day you’re feeling like another, try the modification for that dosha. The modification could be beneficial as a way to return you to balance with your own dominant dosha.
This post brings our home practice full circle. Combining this posture with all the previous ones posted will create a daily practice that is accessible for yogis and yoginis of all levels that will help support you by providing a channel for the mind and body to connect through mindful physical exercise. In case you missed any here are the previous posts in the order to practice them:
If you’re interested in learning or practicing yoga, please feel free to attend one of the yoga classes offered in the John A. Danzi Center, right on the SJC Patchogue campus (free for students, faculty and staff; $5 for alumni and guests).
Have a great (and yoga filled) summer, everyone!