How many times have you heard someone say that savasana is their favorite pose? I’m guessing about a billion times. Probably even more! With good reason, of course. It’s typically the pose that requires the least amount of effort and flexibility-making it an overall crowd favorite. Although it’s seen as one of the least challenging of postures, it’s actually one of the most beneficial. It’s a total relaxation booster, which balances the nervous system, calms the heart rate, and steadies the senses - all while laying still on the floor.
But what if Savasana is your least favorite pose?
Contrary to popular belief, there are some people out there who actually skip savasana in their practice. For some, it’s difficult to completely surrender themselves to the stillness and submission of savasana. For others, the dark and crowded atmosphere of a typical savasana setting might not be the most comforting. But this doesn’t mean that these people have to miss out on all of the incredible benefits of this posture. There are actually many modifications and adjustments to take in savasana that have the same, or even more benefits as the traditional posture. Whether you yourself are struggling with savasana, or are a student or teacher looking to add some color to the end of your practice, below you’ll find a list of different options to try.
Let’s switch it, change it, & rearrange it…
- Legs on the Wall Pose
Step one: Lay flat on your back near a wall.
Step two: Shimmy your hips as close to the wall as possible.
Step three: Rest your legs straight up against the wall.
Step four: Close the eyes, rest your hands on your lower abdominal, out by your sides, or on top of your heart space.
Step five: Use your breath and stay anywhere from 5-30 minutes.
Savasana Benefits: Reduces blood pressure and anxiety.
Additional Benefits: Increases blood circulation.
2. Elevated knees
Step one: Lay flat on your back near a chair, stool, or elevated object.
Step two: Lift your legs up, bend the knees, and rest them on top of the object.
Step three: Close your eyes and rest your arms out wide by your sides, on your lower abdominal, or your heart space.
Step four: Breathe and stay for 5-10 minutes.
Savasana Benefits: Brings mind to a meditative state.
Additional Benefits: Relieves tension in the lower back.
Step one: Use two pillows, bolsters, or towels.
Step two: lay on your right or left side, yogi’s choice.
Step three: Rest one of your chosen props underneath your head and the other between your legs
Step four: Take a slight curve with your upper body and take a small bend with the leg on top.
Step five: Close your eyes and breathe. Stay for 5-10 minutes.
Savasana Benefits: Relieves skeletal and muscular tension.
Additional Benefits: Laying on your right side awakens yang energy and promotes action and freedom. Lying on your left side manifests yin energy and provides restfulness and relaxation.
4. Resting Crocodile
Step one: Lay flat on your stomach.
Step two: Bend and cross your arms linking elbows at your forehead.
Step three: Rest your forehead on top of your arms.
Step four: Take a slight bend with your right or left knee. (you can also place a towel, bolster, or pillow to help cushion your knee)
Step five: Close the eyes, breathe, and stay for 3-5 minutes.
Savasana benefits: Improves concentration and memory.
Additional benefits: Offers deep relaxation for the shoulders and spine.
5. Bent Knees
Step one: Lay flat on your back.
Step two: Bend your knees and place the soles of your feet flat on the floor.
Step three: Rest your hands wide by your sides, on your lower abdominal, or your heart space.
Step four: Close the eyes, breathe, and stay for 5-10 minutes.
Savasana benefits: Cures insomnia and promotes sleep.
Additional Benefits: Supports lower back.
Bolsters and Blocks: Bolsters and blocks can be used in any posture to help support, cushion, and comfort your body. Finding the right placement and use of these props will help sustain your savasana.
Aroma Therapy: Using essential oils, encence, CBD oils, or other aromas will help promote relaxation and rest in your savasana.
Towels and Blankets: Incorporating towels and blankets to cover your body, eyes, or to help cushion your sensitive body parts will help you release any tensions.
Atmosphere: Create your ideal space to practice savasana in. If you feel confined in a shared space, try practicing outdoors in a park or beach, or find a room where you can relax undisturbed. Maybe even try filling it with your favorite colors, cushions, or any personal objects that you really connect with. Make yourself as comfortable as possible.
Choose your Groove!
If there’s anything I’ve learned from yoga, it’s how limitless our bodies and minds are. For every pose, there is more flexibility in us, more breath to use, more advancements to reach for, more, more, and more! Accessing this gift of infinity is what will ultimately allow us to reach freedom. Freedom to choose which variation we’ll take today, which props or tools to utilize, and to essentially choose our practice for our own selves. There is no mold to the perfect savasana, just a guide for you to choose what fits best with your body, your mind, and your soul. Let us know which modification you liked best! Comment your favorite version below!