Child’s Pose | Sanskrit name: Balasana
1. Begin on your hands and knees, then sit your hips back onto the heels, with the knees and feet touching
2. Bring your forehead to the mat, lay your arms along your sides, palms facing up
3. Rest your torso onto the thighs, melting downward, releasing the lower back and hips
4. Relax the shoulders, neck and back, sink into the mat in this restful posture
The benefits of Child’s Pose:
Stretches your whole back, hips, thighs and ankles.
Releases into the neck, shoulders and lower back.
Calms the mind and body and helps eliminate stress and fatigue.
Relieves neck, head and back pain.
Provides an opportunity to clear your mind and focus inward. It also allows you to return to a natural breathing cycle between more challenging asanas (poses).
How to modify:
Instead of having your arms at your sides, you may extend your arms forward, palms pressing firmly into the mat. (see photo below)
Another option, if Child’s Pose is too tight into your hips and knees, bring the knees as wide as the mat, feet remaining close together or touching. This allows for more space to melt the chest downward into the mat and removes strain from the hips. (see photo below)
If strain in the neck, shoulders and head makes bringing your head down to the mat difficult, place a yoga block or a folded up blanket under your forehead. This decreases the strain on your neck and can alleviate pressure in your head if you are prone to headaches. (see photo below)
If your knees and hips are tight and you have trouble sitting your hips right back to your heels, use a yoga block or a folded up blanket under your bottom to sit back onto. This decreases the angle of flexion at your knee joint. (see photo below)
Try this pose today! Incorporate it into your daily yoga practice at the start or in between postures, or practice Balasana before bed to clear your mind. It is a restful posture that provides a lot of relief through the lower back and hips as well as the shoulders. Remember, as with any yoga posture, it may take a few tries to feel comfortable doing it. Play with use of props and other adjustments and just enjoy the practice!
How does Child’s Pose make you feel? Do you feel grounded and centered? Does it bring up an emotional response? How do you modify Child’s Pose to suit your individual needs and yoga practice? I would love to hear from you! Comment below or email me!