Balasana or Child’s Pose: How to get the most out of it

Most yoga teachers will tell you to ”come down to Child’s’ pose” if you feel tired, overwhelmed, or in need of a rest during class. But Child’s’ pose doesn’t’ have to be a snooze.

It is possible to relax in the Child’s Pose or Balasana, particularly if you rest on the floor between a series of balancing poses or when in between Warrior flows.

This can be an excellent transitional pose, as it releases the lower back following deep back bends and resets the nervous system in between long-held yin positions.

While Child’s Pose may seem like a child’s game, its simplicity may hide the many benefits of this asana and the fact that it can be used for much more than just a flop or a drop.

Breath Awareness

Child’s Pose is one of the few postures that allow you to be aware of your breath.

The abdomen becomes constricted when we lie down in a Child’s Pose. This restricts the full-frontal breathing we normally do. The belly can only expand a certain amount with each inhale. If we want to breathe deeply, we must live around the ribs.

It may be uncomfortable, but forcing yourself to breathe slower is beneficial. This will help to slow your heart rate and, in turn, slow down your breathing. Inhale and exhale by focusing on your lower back.

On the inhale, feel the breath travel over the back part of your throat. Create a rasping oceanic sound to make the breath a gentle wave.

Deeper Internalisation

Child’s Pose will help you regain focus if you feel distracted or lack of concentration in class. In this posture, I find it impossible not to close my eyes. I also use the opportunity to massage the third-eye space (between my eyebrows) on the mat.

This massage stimulates the seat of our intuition and divine knowledge, stimulating the pituitary and pineal glands and helping to regulate hormones.

Child’s Pose is a pose that allows you to go inside yourself. If you choose the classic version with your hands by your sides and palms facing up beside your feet, you will feel like you are wrapped in the womb, like a baby.

If you let yourself sink into that sense of security and nurturing, it can be very healing. The idea of rekindling this feeling in our busy, hectic lives sounds wonderful.

Prepare for Forward Bends

Beginners can use Balasana to learn a deep forward bend. It is also possible to become quite active when in the Child’s Pose.

By controlling your breath and slowly stretching the sacral spine and lumbar spine, you can soften your shoulders by applying pressure to the palms.

When you widen your legs apart (wide-leg Child’s’ Pose), your belly and chest can sink freely to the mat, and your hips and thighs can open and stretch.

Soften, Soften, Soften

The child’s pose is a great way to learn how to soften. Resting and chilling are two different things. You may not notice the subtleties in softening every posture if you are a ‘go-hard’ type of person and only use Child’s Pose to switch off.

By adopting a gentler, softer attitude, you can go deeper into any posture, including a Warrior position.

Consider Child’s Pose as a posture of rest, but not simply a pose to relax. Actively, and not passively, you can softly open the lower spine, hips, and shoulders. Active part: your focused attention, breathing, and surrendering into the depths. This is not the same as either the pushing/striving or the flopping.

Working the Posture Incrementally

You can move your fingertips forward as you relax in Child’s Pose until your forearms are lifted off the mat. Spread your fingers and press your palms firmly into your mat. This will help you to shift your weight over your heels and move your shoulders down and away from the mat.

Child’s Pose is one of the few postures that allows for gradual, subtle changes in alignment to improve depth and achieve fullest expression.

The child’s pose is the perfect way to sigh – release all of it – it feels great.

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