Does your practice leave you desiring Savasana, Corpse pose?
Do you tend to fall asleep in Savasana?
How do you feel 1 hour later after practice? 2 hours after? the next morning?
Savasana is considered one of the most difficult asana and is, in my observation, overtaught and too often desired at the end of a class. Savasana is meant to allow the mind to settle on the stillness, the space, and the unveiling of your true nature. It is not a pose for the purpose of recuperation and rest after an “invigorating”, challenging or hard practice.
Savasana – the seat of the corpse – is from the root word Shava. One merely dies away the “old” self to move into the openings created in your practice. A state of renewal. One digests the byproducts of their practice, and absorb the results of practice. It is recommended that the practitioner turn their awareness inward. This can purify oneself of sensory distraction. With a lessening of the senses distracting the relaxed focus of the mind, one can become more aware of their body’s subtle movements, breath and the state of mind. It can be used as a preperatory stage to meditation.
I recommend Savasana for evening practices only!
Meditation does not require Savasana. It is suggested. You can participate in your practice moving through a sequence that is inspired from inquiry into freedom. A sequence derived by oneself must be carefully monitored for pitfalls such as attachment, desire, aversion, and violence.
I recommend for a Yoga practice, one be advised by a teacher who knows you and understands your intentions for practice; and has a good working understanding of your constitutional nature (Prakriti) and tendencies for imbalance (Vikriti). This is the beautiful combination of Yoga & Ayurveda.
Then your practice supports you. A sequence ending with seated postures, the true meaning of asana – meaning seat – is toward the end of your practice. Here your seat is prepared from the work accomplished in the standing and dynamic movements. The seat one prepares is harnessed with good circulation of Prana. One can then sit for periods of time with compassion, avoiding imposition to sit when the seat is uncomfortable or numb. This is key to the practices of pranayama and meditation.
Back to Savasana. If the body and mind drop into sleep during savasana then one risks the pitfalls of losing the connection to consciousness. Physically and energetically the body goes cold, looses the space and actually collects unwanted stagnation, especially in the lungs and heart. Repeated practice of going to sleep or dozing off during Savasana can create long term challenges often not noticed until many years later. If you fall asleep more times than not, please pay attention to your body’s signals and heed the body’s need for rest by looking into your lifestyle and the way you choose to live your days.
The results of your practice can leave you feeling:
- Warm, invigorated and light
- A feeling of ease with activities of daily living
- Feelings of fluidity when arising from sleep the next day
- Energized circulation
- Grounded, with sharpness and clarity of mind; relaxed focus of attention
- Clear senses; emotional and mental fluidity