Benefits of Savasana
Savasana or Corpse Pose is amongst the most challenging yoga postures, not because it is an advanced pose but because your body needs to relax and still itself. It can be a very frustrating experience for most people as they find it hard to stay in the pose even for a minute. However, with consistent practice, one can master Savasana and reap immense benefits from it. Here are some of the most notable benefits of Savasana!
1) Calms your mind:
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It’s probably the most effective of all meditations where you let go of all thoughts that enter your mind. Doing nothing sounds simple but is challenging to do as we live hectic lives, which makes us want always to do something. Practicing Savasana is a way of just being in the present moment and enjoying the peace that comes with it.
2) Increases Serotonin:
Have you ever noticed yourself smiling or laughing after some time spent relaxing? That’s because relaxation increases serotonin levels which are responsible for making us feel good about ourselves! It has antidepressant properties, too, keeping depression away from you. How cool is that?
3) Tunes your body:
Savasana somehow tunes all our systems together right from getting rid of excess cortisol to increasing parasympathetic activity. So doing this pose has immense benefits on the vital functions of your body.
4) Releases endorphins:
This one might be more difficult to understand, but practicing Savasana releases endorphins, which are ‘feel-good hormones that help you fight stress at the cellular level.
5) Lengthens your spine:
This is one of the most notable benefits of Savasana as, along with increasing cerebrospinal fluid, it also lengthens your spine and releases any compression that might have happened to it during the yoga practice.
6) Improves digestion:
The relaxation part increases digestive fire but even before that, practicing Savasana gives you an overall workout for your organs too! It’s effective in treating constipation, piles, acidity, etc. Practicing this pose regularly can cure these issues altogether!
7) Gives relief from menstrual problems:
As mentioned above, practicing Savasana increases parasympathetic activity, which can help with menstrual problems. So it’s a great pose to practice if you have any issues going on down there!
8) Reduces migraines:
This might be a weird benefit, but Savasana helps relieve the pain caused by a migraine simply because it increases the neurotransmitter serotonin, which is known for its effectiveness in reducing pain and works as an antidepressant.
9) Increases blood circulation:
A relaxed body usually has increased chakras activity due to increased kundalini energy, increasing blood circulation, making you feel rejuvenated and revived.
10) Makes your legs stronger:
As we all know, yoga reduces the chances of heart diseases; hence, practicing certain poses like Parvatasana (Mountain Pose) and Tadasana (Mountain Pose) can help make your legs stronger. Practicing this as a part of your yoga routine, therefore, enables you to be more active.
11) Makes you look younger:
We all must have heard about yogis living longer lives as they age gracefully – well, that’s because regular yoga increases the production of telomerase – an enzyme that slows down the aging process by repairing cells that make us live a healthier life, simply making us look younger.
How to do savasana and its benefits:
Savasana is the last asana in a series. It must be done with care and attention so that you can feel the difference it makes to your body and mind after practicing it. Savasana is also called Corpse Pose or Final Relaxation Pose.
In this asana, the yogi lets go of all effort and become completely relaxed, softening both body and mind. For beginners, keeping still for 5-7 minutes may seem like a long time. Still, once you become familiar with the practice and experience its benefits on your mental and physical health, you will look forward to savasana instead of rushing through it as most students do currently.
Savasana is commonly practiced at the end of yoga class to prepare you for meditation. However, it is equally effective if practiced alone at the end of your day. When performed regularly, savasana has several benefits on mental and physical health, including:-
– Promotes better sleep
– Helps lower blood pressure
– Relieves stress, anxiety, and fatigue
– Reduces depression
– Lowers heart rate
– Helps relieve headache pain
As stated before, once experienced with the practice, you will enjoy it rather than rush through like most students currently do. In addition, Savasana allows you to deepen your breath and become still within, both essential for increasing happiness levels in the body.
As time passes, you will become more aware of how your breathing affects your state of mind and emotions, which helps bring about positive physical changes in the body. It also increases awareness of the connection between breath and movement, helping improve performance the next time you pick up an asana.
– If you have high blood pressure or heart problems, consult with your doctor before trying savasana.
– If you are pregnant, confirm with your doctor first whether this asana is appropriate for you.
– Avoid practicing this asana if you suffer from any respiratory illnesses such as asthma. Turn to another restorative practice instead.
– If you feel drowsy and sleep is the last thing on your mind, best avoid savasana and turn instead to a more active practice like the Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation). You can then end with final relaxation by lying on your back for a few minutes until your body regains enough energy to sit up slowly and gracefully.
How to do savasana:
– Lie down on your back with legs straight or slightly apart, arms at the sides.
– Relax all over, releasing any tension in your body and letting go of any thoughts you have. Do not bring up any new ideas too. Instead, be still and breathe deeply into the abdomen, allowing the breath to flow naturally without forcing it to be deep or long. The inhalation should expand the belly while the exhalation relaxes it again.
– If you are distracted by tingling sensations in any part of your body, gently direct your attention towards that area and concentrate on where you feel them; then release that thought too and return to focusing on breathing correctly. For example, it is usual for toes to tingle when you lie down.
Concentrate on them if they do, and breathe into where you feel it. Let your mind focus on the tingles until they fade away, then move on to another body part that needs attention.
– Continue focusing on different parts of your body in this way until all aspects have been attended to and settled down again. Then allow your whole body to relax even more deeply, feeling how pleasantly heavy it becomes with each incoming breath and how to light with each outgoing one.
– You may also direct your attention towards a specific area or organ of the body, such as the heart center, to experience the peace and love our hearts hold for us. If thoughts intrude, release them too and come back to following the natural flow of the breath.
– Continue to gently focus on any area or organ of the body that needs attention until you feel more relaxed.
– If your mind becomes quiet, stay with it and enjoy this state for a while before slowly returning to your regular breathing pattern once again.
– Remain lying down for at least 10 minutes after this practice before slowly getting up to resume activities. If you want to rest for 5 minutes or so, it is okay too; but avoid using savasana as another opportunity to take a nap. Instead, get up slowly without hurrying and stretch out limbs before resuming other activities as soon as you feel ready. You can use this time for meditation if you like to.
Disadvantages of savasana:
– The relaxation may not be that deep or complete for some people even after regularly practicing. Do not push it if you feel stressed. Continue with what you can and let go of any thoughts that pop up, returning to your breathing again.
– Savasana is a very good counterpose to use after forwarding bending asanas such as Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend) or Upavistha Konasana (Wide-Angle Seated Forward Bend), especially when done for extended periods in a class setting. This helps release tension from the back and legs while increasing blood flow before resuming activity.
Savasana requires an advanced learning process:
More advanced yoga students who have some experience with meditation can explore this technique further by learning to relax the chakras or energy centers of the body consciously. This is done by first focusing on one particular area and then spreading awareness into another part of the same center. You can move from one location to another until your whole energy field feels relaxed enough for prana, or life force energy, to flow more easily through you.
– In simpler terms, it means being aware of areas where you feel blocked or cramped up and releasing tension there so that your energy level rises a little bit before coming back down again slowly.
– The process should be done very gently at first, as rushing ahead will defeat the purpose of savasana entirely. So just let go gradually and gently rather than plowing through the whole thing in one go.