How the Corpse Pose Can Improve Your Life
The deceptively simple Savasana pose offers amazing benefits for your mental and physical health. Whether you're a beginner or have been practicing yoga for years, you'll want to include Savasana in your daily yoga routine.
What is Savasana?
Savasana, also known as the "corpse" pose, is often the final pose in a yoga session. The pose is performed by lying on your back with your hands at your side. As you breathe in and out, you'll relax your muscles and banish worries and responsibilities from your mind. Although Savasana sounds like a basic pose, letting go of your mental to-do list and focusing only on the present can be very difficult, particularly if your life is a little hectic. Relaxation is the goal, but you don't want to become so relaxed that you fall asleep.
How Can Savasana Help Me?
Stress reduction may be one of the most important benefits of the corpse pose. Stress is linked to a number of diseases and conditions ranging from high blood pressure to autoimmune disorders to irritable bowel syndrome. Savasana helps you clear your mind and reduces the effects of the "fight or flight" response.
The response energizes your body and produces extra adrenaline, a hormone that provides a surge of energy to help you escape dangerous situations or muster the strength to tackle them.
If you're chronically stressed, your body continually operates in fight or flight mode. Over time, the response can lead to upset stomachs, diarrhea, abdominal pain, irritability, anxiety, and depression. Savasana offers a natural way to turn off the response and lower your stress level. It also helps you relax after a vigorous yoga session and restore balance to your body and mind.
Other benefits of Savasana include:
- Fewer Aches and Pains. Muscle tension causes aches and pains that never seem to go away. Tight muscles limit your range-of-motion and lead to back, shoulder, and neck pain. Muscle tension in your shoulders and neck may also be a factor in both migraines and tension headaches. Although pain relievers may dull the pain for a few hours, the medications don't provide long-lasting relief. If you add Savasana to your daily routine, this may help alleviate that pain naturally.
- Better Sleep. It's difficult to sleep when thoughts constantly pass through your mind. When you're no longer focused on the TV, your cellphone, or a novel, you have plenty of time to think about problems, regrets and all of the things you need to accomplish the next day. Performing the corpse pose at the end of the day can help you banish unwanted thoughts and improve your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep.
- Lower Blood Pressure. Stress causes or worsens high blood pressure, increasing your risk of heart attack or stroke. Savasana may help you keep your blood pressure under control and avoid the unpleasant consequence of the condition.
- Improved Focus. It's difficult to focus on long-term goals when your mind is constantly racing. Savasana not only reduces tension but also promotes self-acceptance and improves self-confidence. Thanks to your new mindset, you may find it easier to set and meet goals. Your concentration and memory may also improve when you master the corpse pose.
- More Energy. Finding the energy to exercise, stay up later than 8:30, or clean out the attic can be a struggle when your muscles ache and you can't stop thinking about the busy day ahead of you. Luckily, performing the corpse pose regularly can boost your flagging energy level and give you more time to accomplish your goals.
Are you interested in learning more about Savasana and other beneficial yoga poses? We can help you find the perfect yoga class for you. Contact us for information on our current class schedule.
Mindbodygreen: 5 Life-Affirming Benefits of Corpse Pose
Healthline: The Science of Savasana: How Rest Can Benefit Any Kind of Workout
Yoga Journal: The Subtle Struggle of Savasana, 12/14/13
International Journal of Yoga: Exploring the Therapeutic Effects of Yoga and Its Ability to Increase Quality of Life