Manic: My rushed schedule, so I forget to take time out to properly breathe and stretch.
Managed: Asked yoga instructor Roman Acevedo to join my website team with a weekly pose that I can do at home. Join me and do it, too!
Roman decided to kick-off his first post with the very comforting Childs Pose. Did you know that this pose not only stretches the hips, thighs and ankles, but also calms the brain? I know my brain could use some calming!
Read on as Roman shows us how to do it properly and shares several other ways the Childs Pose helps the body.
So read this, then leave your keyboard and join me in doing the Childs Pose, also known as the Balasana (bah-LAHS-anna). bala = child
Step by Step
1. Kneel on the floor. Touch your big toes together and sit on your heels, then separate your knees about as wide as your hips.
2. Exhale and lay your torso down between your thighs. Broaden your sacrum across the back of your pelvis and narrow your hip points toward the navel, so that they nestle down onto the inner thighs. Lengthen your tailbone away from the back of the pelvis while you lift the base of your skull away from the back of your neck.
3. Lay your hands on the floor alongside your torso, palms up, and release the fronts of your shoulders toward the floor. Feel how the weight of the front shoulders pulls the shoulder blades wide across your back.
Balasana is a resting pose. Stay anywhere from 30 seconds to a few minutes. Beginners can also use Balasana to get a taste of a deep forward bend, where the torso rests on the thighs. Stay in the pose from 1 to 3 minutes. To come up, first lengthen the front torso, and then with an inhalation lift from the tailbone as it presses down and into the pelvis.
We usually don’t breathe consciously and fully into the back of the torso. Balasana provides us with an excellent opportunity to do just that. Imagine that each inhalation is “doming” the back torso toward the ceiling, lengthening and widening the spine. Then with each exhalation release the torso a little more deeply into the fold.
- Gently stretches the hips, thighs, and ankles
- Calms the brain and helps relieve stress and fatigue
- Relieves back and neck pain when done with head and torso supported
Roman Acevedo, Yoga Instructor
Roman began practicing yoga in 2000 to complement his rigorous workout and hectic work schedule. Leading to increased strength, concentration and flexibility, he found yoga far more beneficial in restoring peace in any stressful environment. Studying under Andrew Eppler and local instructors Dave Oliver, Cheryl Oliver and John Salisbury, Roman is currently working towards the 500 hour advanced Yoga Instructor training.
Read more about Roman on our team bio page.
What is your favorite yoga pose? Tell us in the comments section.
Child’s pose is an excellent way to relieve physical tension. I’ve done it to help with insomnia. I do mine a little differently though. I stretch my arms out in front like he’s doing in the second picture and open my knees wider so my torso can fit between them. The wonderful thing about yoga though is that you do what feels good to your body. The next time I do child’s pose, I’m going to try his arm variation to see the difference. I can see where that would really help open your shoulders – good for people like me with desk jobs!
Thank you for your feedback! The pose you are referring to, adho mukha virasana, is a wonderful variation to balasana as well. This intermediate pose requires more flexibility in the knees and lower back as it is a more intense posture than balasana. Bringing the arms along side the body with palms facing up, as pictured in the first pose, is a great way to stretch the upper back and shoulders. Enjoy!