Mostly Yoga teacher says that Shavasana is the most important part of your yoga practice makes you comfortable.
First of all, I would like to clarify that this asana has two names, “Shavasana” and “Savasana” but the purpose of both is the same. Don’t be confused about reading or listening to the two names of this asana. This is not an English word, it is a Sanskrit word, which carries the same meaning for both.
Shavasan or Savasana is a pose that makes us completely calm from inside and makes us fully active from outside.
This asana creates peace, harmony and ease in our nature while embalming.
In shavasana, energy flows inwards and upwards in each body parts beginning from the feet and ending with the head and you can actually feel like kicking and letting go of disease, fatigue or injury from the body
Shavasan helps to get rid of tension, suffering and tiredness.
The important principle of shavasana is that we should remain completely calm inside and be fully active from outside.
It is necessary to follow a few instructions while performing Shavasana.
Persons who do not know how to take rest look shattered. They don’t have the requisite strength to do anything.
Bones in a dead man become rigid, that is not the case in Shavasana, it is a complete awareness and energetic pose.
1- What is Shavasana ?
2- Who can do Shavasana ?
3- Why Shavasana is Important for Relaxation?
4- Shavasana Definition
5- 10 Benefits of Shavasana with Examples
6- How to do shavasana ?
7- 1st Stage of Shavasana
8- 2nd Stage of Shavasan
9- 3rd Stage of Shavasan
10- 4th Stage of Shavasana
11- Shavasana Procedure
12- Why do shavasana After Yoga Practice?
13- Other opinions about Shavasana
14- Obstacles while doing Shavasana
15- Is doing Shavasana Easy ?
16- Scientific Results of Shavasana
What is Shavasana ?
This asana is not a dead body posture in realty, but it is a must beneficial asana, an asana practiced with a view to securing complete relaxation of all parts of the body and remove tensions both external and internal. Nerves and blood vessels are relaxed in this asana
Who can do Shavasana ?
If you think that Shavasana is not your cup of tea, then I can prove you completely wrong. There will be very few people in the world who are not suffering one of these problems, stress, tension, BP, sugar, hypertension, mentally tiredness, physically tiredness, family stress, business stress, official stress. Doing proper shavasana can help to get rid of these problems.
Anyone can perform Shavasana, whether he is a child, young or old person, male or female and even ailing persons can take advantage from this asan.
Person with any profession, farmer, a student, a clerk, a lawyer or a business, a wrestler or an officer are free to perform Shavasana.
Get complete relaxation and relieved of fatigue and rejuvenated.
Why Shavasana is Important for Relaxation?.
There is many other rest taking postures, such as sitting rest posture, rest in Vajarasan, rest in Shithilasan etc.
But taking rest in Shavasan is the most significant because it is in this posture that our body, pran, mind and sense organs are energized and revitalized.
It establishes a wonderful harmony between the external and the internal organs.
It brings about a co-ordination between the three parts of our body – the physical, astral and the causal.
In Sanskrit, “Shav “ Means a dead body and asana means pose. So people compare it with dead body pose, but that’s not so true.
In yogapedia – they have mentioned that
It is a pose that gives full energy to the body and removes fatigue. You may have attended yoga classes or not attended; when you will attend this you will find that no yoga asan is complete without shavasan.
Many Yoga teachers suggest taking rest in shavasan when complete a single yoga pose.
The Sanskrit word sava means corpse hence this is the corpse the shava asana is also known as dead body pose
Lying down on the back on the ground and keeping the body straight like a corpse is called Shavasana.
It removes fatigue and pacifies the mind. This is the best way to take complete rest.
Muscles are completely relaxed by Shavasana. Energy from the non-fatigued organs is redistributed to the fatigued ones. All the organs of the body, both external and internal are relieved of stresses and strains.
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10 Benefits of Shavasana with Examples
It alleviates all the tensions of body and mind. It is very efficacious in restoring to sound sleep.
What Denise Schmidt says about Shavasana:
Practitioners of this asana complete the quota of sleep in lesser time. And that makes us more calm, alert and energetic.
kibatsuki says that :
It reduces high blood pressure to normal level and regulates respiratory system.
A natural harmony between the body and mind is established. A constant practice of this asan also helps us to gain a contentment of heart and a greater equanimity of mind.
It builds up a sound body, a sound mind, and mind is established, freshness, energy, a natural harmony between the body and mind and unfailing health are blessings of Shavasan
Beauty of the soul manifests itself in the charm of outer personality.
Heart disease, insomnia, nervous debility, mental imbalance, lack of memory, fear psychosis and many other psychological ailments are alleviated by this asan.
Jennifer Klansnic says that She got relief in her sick body
Practice of Shavasan after meals rectifies the digestive system.
Shavasana helps to regenerate body energy.
Shavasana helps in weight loss
How to do shavasana ?
Now I think you are enough motivated about this asana after learning it’s benefits, relaxing part and definition of it.
Lets start learning step by step how to do Shavasana ?
Lie down flat on the back. Keep a distance of one foot between the two feet.
Rest the hands a little away from the body and keep the palm facing the sky.
Keep the neck straight. The whole body should be straight and symmetrical, but relaxed. Keep the eyes gently closed.
1st Stage of Shavasana
If we look at the outside, there are three main parts of the body, feet, trunk, and head. These three parts play an important role in this asana.
Let’s shake slowly the toes and relax them. This will relax the nerves of the feet. Shake the shoulders and this will relax the trunk.
Now shake the neck and that will relax the nerves of the brain. Imagine that the entire body is relaxed. This way each and every organ of the body will get relaxed.
2nd Stage of Shavasan
Normalize the breath. This demands no effort. The breath, after a while, will automatically become normal.
Make the breath deeper. While inhaling feel elated, while exhaling feel delighted. Do it very slowly.
Our breathing activity has also three parts
- Effect of breathing on the abdomen
- Its effect on the middle part
- Its effect on lungs.
While inhaling, do feel that the whole abdomen is filled with air, thereafter, it will flow into the middle part and finally into the lungs.
While exhaling first the lungs will be emptied, then the middle part and finally, the abdominal portion.
Remember that in this deep inhalation – exhalation activity there should be no tension at all anywhere.
Breathe in and breathe out in a pleasant and natural manner.
3rd Stage of Shavasan
Start inhaling deeply, naturally, and subtly (without producing a sound). Now, with the eye of the mind, go on visualizing at every relaxed organ of the body one by one, from the toe to the top (crown of the head).
Now start exhaling slowly and reversing the gaze of the mind’s eye from the crown to the toe, make a full inspection of the body step by step.
Involve the mind wholeheartedly in this process. When a practitioner attains maturity in Savasan by and by, make headway towards the attainment of Pratyahara (withdrawing the senses from the objects and drawing them upward) Concentration and Dhyan (meditation)
4th Stage of Shavasana
Our body is constituted of five elements: Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Ether. They are stationed in our body in the following manner.
- Earth Element starts from the toe to the knee.
- Water Element starts from the knee to the naval
- Fire Element starts from the naval to the throat
- From the throat to the middle of the eyebrows (Element of Air)
- From the middle of the eyebrows to the crown of the head (Element of Ether)
Visualize these elements from the feet to the crown of the head. Knowledge of elements will ensue.
There is also a metaphysical element that transcends all elements and feeling of that super Element will follow.
It promotes the attainment of such a state. At the end returns slowly from the metaphysical to the physical consciousness and sit up in the normal pose.
Point of concentration –”The entire body”
The important thing to kept in mind here is that Shavasan in itself is a complete asan.
Hence maintain a perfect stability of body and control of Mind and pran.
While introspecting, the body with closed eyes does not allow the mind to go astray. Do make slow and persistent effort to keep the mind under control?
By constant and slow practice the mind will get so much absorbed in visualizing the inner parts of the body that it will be impossible for it to go outside.
Note: This asana should always be performed at the end of other asans
Do not sleep while performing this asana in order to obtain the maximum benefits.
A brief summery of shavasana procedure:-
Lie flat on your back with your legs together but not touching each other. Your arms close to the body the palms facing up. Keep your eyes gently closed with the facial muscles relaxed and breathe deeply and slowly through the nostril
Scan the body and bring awareness to feet and imagine to feel your feet, feel your skin, feel your bones and muscles with tingling armed healing energy like your breath is permeating your feet with life force, and visualize that light moving up into your calves.
Feel that warming light moving up into the hips and feel that life force permeating the entire pelvic region and then see that light moving up into the abdomen front and back.
Let’s imagine the tingling light surrounding the skin or your fingers and then bones and muscles and continue to feel that light moving in the entire body.
Feel that warm light surrounding from top to back and then to your legs and feeling this warming light use your breath to guide it and scan the entire body from feet to forehead.
Completely surrender to the pose there is nothing else that needs to be done.
Why do shavasana After Yoga Practice?
There are different views behind it that why do shavasana after yoga practice. Few yoga teachers think that there are two reasons behind it. The first reason is the physical reason.
They think that when a practitioner do yoga he/she stretch his muscles but he don’t stretch his muscles only the whole idea behind yoga is that his emotions are trapped within his body.
What healthline thinks about it
The Yoga teachers think that practitioner comes in the yoga class having a lot of stress and when he/she have a lot of stress he tend to kind of like pull up his shoulders bring his shoulders forward and he goes through life like this with a lot of headaches, with a lot of neck and shoulder pain. So his emotions actually have an influence on his body.
And when he does yoga he works in those areas where the stress is accumulated where he as this stress. When the practitioner does Shavasana at the end of his practice he gives the time to the body, he gives time to the mind, he gives time to the brain to incorporate all this input.
If a practitioner doesn’t do shavasana at the end of yoga class and he just stand up runs out and go back to normal life, then he is back in the stressful situation again and the body doesn’t have the time to let go of these all stresses. This asana takes only 10% to 15% time of his yoga practices but it gives the boot to his mind, brain, body, and all organs.
Secondly, Shavasana brings attention to awareness back in the body. When a person enters in yoga class, the process of yoga is, he should leave all his worries, tensions, stresses, and bad thinking’s while attending this. After completing yoga poses, a person do Shavasana and this asana helps him to leave these all negative things from the body and fill up with positive energy.
Other opinions about Shavasana
It allows a practitioner to integrate what happened to him within the class. So it’s his time at the end of the class to just really soak it all to allow his body to receive what happened to it physically, mentally, emotionally, energetically and spiritually
As the asana is named it’s a practice in death, it’s a practice and letting go. This can sound a little bit morbid but it’s important for us to practice letting go in a controlled environment.
So this letting go is actually a metaphor for letting go in life and when the practitioner has done shavasana he actually goes through a metaphorical rebirth.
Obstacles while doing Shavasana
A mostly time it happens that either practitioner fell asleep or his mind is so wandering from one thing to the other that he is not able to get relaxed.
It is hard to concentrate at one point.
It is seen that some people cannot keep their body stable for long.
Second truth behind it is that some people do not stop vain worries from coming to mind.
Yoga teacher explains that some people think that lying down for a long time starts pain in the neck or in the back
The solution is simple if you become sleepy while in the shavasana, begin to breathe a bit faster and deeper. If the practitioner who is doing savasana, Focuses on the mind, it will help to withdraw your attention inside.
Is doing Shavasana Easy ?
While many consider this a simple posture at first, its simplicity eventually proves to be deceiving. Because it hart to stop the mind when you are doing nothing.
The goal of the shavasana is for the body and minds to be perfectly still and relaxed.
It is not an easy task because, while performing this asana, your body should be motionless at ease and mind as well should be quite
Just lie down on the mat and closing the eyes is not enough, shavasana is the second part of the meditation that makes stable relaxation
It goes without saying that the savasana will take some time to perfect.
You will find the simple exercise of focusing your attention on each part of your body and consciously directing the breath there to be a great help with this posture
There are two common obstacles that can prevent you from fully benefitting from this posture, sleepiness and restless mind.
If you find yourself getting drowsy while in the shavasana increase the rate and depth of your breathing.
If your mind is restless or wondering focus your attention on all of the bodily sensations you’re experiencing. . just try to focus at any of one point, whether it is the sensation of the floor beneath you or at your breath rhythm
We recommend that you begin your period of yoga asana practice with at least 3 – 5 minutes of shavasana.
Return to it periodically through your posture session to relax and rejuvenate the body/mind and then conclude your session with at least 3-5 minutes more
Scientific Results of Shavasana
Scientific study says that savasana helps more deeply into toning the parasympathetic nervous system. While getting into rest and digest mode restorative mode in this asana, then you do just kicking back on the couch.
What healthline says about it
One interesting research about Shavasana was published by British medical journal, Chandra Patel in 1975. She picked a few people who were suffering from high blood pressure and her yoga and shavasana for 20 minutes every day. After 3 months she found drastically results in these candidates.
Now what she found was impressible, people’s blood pressure between the beginning of the study and when they finished it three months was something like, 20 points lower in the diastolic reading and somewhere between 10 and 15 points lower in the diastolic reading of the lower the two reading.
She filed this up over a 12 month period and most of those drops in blood pressure who learned to do shavasana , in her study, they did this asana for 20 minutes only three times in a weak.
But they were encouraged to do it when they get home although not everybody did and of course this is a problem with yoga. Yoga only works as long as you do it.
So it has been proved here by science that Shavasan has proved beneficial in diseases like blood pressure and sugar.
It is proved that this asana helps to regenerate the energy levels in the body. Starting this asana is not a big deal, then why not start it by today, because we each constituent need energy to complete our daily tasks, whether it is a student, businessman, doctor, professional or a person linked to any profession.
Spend some good time in Shavasana with the right strategy and with proper process.
When you complete Shavasana, observe- how you feel after the practice. Carry this peaceful energy and mindfulness with you as you go through the rest of your day