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6 Variations of Shavasana

By Tytoni Yoga

SUN OCT 24, 2021

What is Shavasana?

Shavasana is considered to be the king pose in yoga, not because it’s necessary the most physically demanding, but because it can be a perfect gateway into the ultimate goal of yoga: to strip away all the worldly layers we surround ourselves with reveal our inner truth.

Variations of Shavasana

These are just 6 variations of Shavasana, but there are more. No one variation is “the ideal”. Each person may find a different variation they connect with most, and that can even depend on the day or even the moment of the day, they enter it.

  1. Lie down on a supporting surface, legs gently separated with heels in and toes pointed out. Your hands can be on the belly--don't entertain the fingers--or one hand on your abdomen, one hand on your heart, or palms up, hands gently separated from your sides.
  2. Lie down an a supporting surface with your knees supported by pillows or rolled blankets so the spine can rest fully on the surface below.
  3. Lie down on your back with your legs lifted up on a cushioned chair or sofa, so the spine can rest fully on the surface below.
  4. Lie on your side with pillows and/or rolled blankets supporting your back, front and under your knees.
  5. Lie on your side on a sofa or bed. This is especially good if you struggle to get up off the floor.
  6. Reclined on a sofa or bed, with your knees, back and head supported.

Keeping your spine flat and body fully supported helps the mind to quiet and rest.

Be sure that your chin isn't higher than your forehead, you can use pillows or folded blankets to help achieve this. If you do use a pillow or folded blanket under your head, be sure to leave your neck free.

Benefits of Shavasana

Some of the many benefits that can be experienced in Shavasana:

  • rest the body
  • rest the mind
  • calm nervous system
  • heal body & mind
  • aid digestion & immunity
  • reveal inner wisdom

When to Shavasana

You can get into shavasana at any time when you feel you need to rest. We often get into Shavasana at the beginning or end of a yoga asana practice to settle into the moment and let our body and mind rest and absorb our practice. Sometimes we'll add shavasana between asanas--yoga positions--to rest the body before continuing the movement practice.

We can also get into shavasana when we practice Yoga Nidra, or guided awareness. By getting into shavasana for guided awareness, with our spine fully resting on the surface below, we encourage our thinking brain to rest, which then allows us to go further into our yogic sleep and really begin to heal from the inside out.

Interested in trying out Yoga Nidra? Sign up for a Free Yoga Nidra recording!

If you have questions about shavasana or Yoga Nidra, send me a message! I'd love to help answer any queries you may have.