by: Joan Hyman
The benefits of Savasana…..
I get it. You are a Type A, on-the-go, two-page to-do list super-human kind of student. But give yourself a break and really explore the benefits of your practice; give yourself the gift of Savasana. As a yoga teacher in Los Angeles it’s always a challenge to communicate to my students the benefits of savasana. A lot of people consider Savasana a dispensable little nap after the physical exertion of their practice. I’ve seen more and more students leaving before Savasana and complaining to me that they just don’t have the time. But you can make the time, even if you have to leave early.
Savasana is the completion of our yoga practice. More importantly, during this rest we allow our bodies to replenish while the nervous system moves into a parasympathetic state. This is otherwise known as the relaxation response, wherein your breathing slows, blood pressure lowers, and energy is drawn from the extremities of the body toward the vital organs. It is highly nourishing and regenerative and has a cumulative effect on your entire system, far more replenishing than normal sleep. How do we get there?
1. Quiet your body by lying in a comfortable position on your back. If you experience discomfort roll up a blanket and support the back of the head or place the roll under your knees to support your lower back. If your Type A brain is still ricocheting around the room, an eye pillow is beneficial to help quiet the mind and move inward. I certainly use one.
2. Focus on your breath, feel the heaviness of your legs and the back of your body spreading on the floor. Let all that go and relax into a place of peace. You are in a super-conscious state, experiencing the oneness of the mind and body.
Don’t beat yourself up if this is hard for you. Practice. Remember, it’s a posture just like any other! Practicing Savasana will help you feel more connected to a quieter more peaceful you!
About the Author:
Green Apple Core Ambassador, Joan Hyman is a distinguished YogaWorks Senior Teacher, who weaves her personal yogic journey into popular teacher training, workshops and retreats all over the world. As a leader in the Los Angeles yoga community, Joan also contributes to popular blogs such as The Daily Love, Elephant Journal, and Mind Body & Green. She has been featured in Yoga Journal, ORIGIN Magazine and Women’s Health for her advice and experience on health and wellness.