Balasana or Child Pose Yoga

Benefits, Contraindications, Tips and How to Do

English Name(s)
Child’s Pose
Sanskrit
बालासन/Bālāsana
Pronunciation
BAHL-ahs-ahna
Meaning
bala: “child”
asana: “pose”

Introduction

Child’s Pose is a quintessential pose in a yoga class and is used mainly as a resting pose. This is a forward bending pose that can actually be practiced in an active way, or in a passive way, bringing slightly different benefits to the pose.

Balasana literally translates from Sanskrit as ‘Child Pose’, making this posture one that invites humility and gentleness into your practice. Balasana reminds us not only how vulnerable we are but also how beautiful life can be if we allow ourselves to appreciate our own fragility as a child does.

The study found that short-term yogic practice may significantly improve cricket-specific motor fitness components especially muscle endurance, agility, and balance.

Muscle Focus

Child’s Pose focuses on several muscles such as

  • Gluteus
  • Adductors
  • Quads (front thigh muscles)
  • Back muscles

Ideal For Health Conditions

  • A very restorative pose.
  • Soothes Central Nervous System.
  • Helps to surrender and relax.

Benefits of Child’s Pose

1. Energises Arms and back

If using Balasana as an active pose, you can press your hands into the floor, lifting your elbows to energize the arms and back. If used passively, then it is a resting position that allows you to relax and calm down in between more strenuous poses.

2. Relaxes Shoulders

Child’s Pose gently stretches the muscles of the lower back and upper thighs while lengthening the spine at the same time. It also relieves tension in all parts of your body, especially around your neck, shoulders, and low back area. This makes Child’s Pose absolutely perfect for relaxation.

3. Helps to Surrender Mind and Body

It allows you to surrender your mind and body into a place of quiet, soothing serenity. When Balasana is practiced correctly it can have such an enormously calming effect that it’s also known as “the antidote to anger”.

4. Helps to Deal with Stress and Anxiety

This pose is a highly effective posture for dealing with stress and anxiety. Balasana encourages the release of tension, which in turn helps to calm and cleanse the body.

5. Relaxes Abdominals and Chest

When using Child’s Pose in a passive way, it gently relaxes the muscles of the front body, including the abdominals and chest. Your entire body is supported, your arms and shoulders are relaxed, and your hips are resting.

6. Head Sits Below the Heart Level

while practicing this pose the head is resting below the heart in the pose, more blood flows into the brain, creating a calming and soothing effect on the mind.

7. Stretches Ankles, Feet, Quads and Hips

Stretches the ankles, feet, quads, and hips, as well as the entire back, shoulders, and neck. Because the head is resting below the heart in the pose, more blood flows into the brain, creating a calming and soothing effect on the mind.

Contraindications

People with recent or recurring injuries or issues in the knees or ankles may have trouble in this pose. Those with high or low blood pressure should exercise caution when practicing this pose. If possible, ensure that the stomach and bowels are empty for this pose, as you may experience discomfort.

Variations

  • Balasana with Props (Child’s Pose as a restorative pose)
  • Sharnagat Mudra

Preparatory Pose

  • Vajrasana (Thunderbolt Pose)
  • Virasana (Hero Pose)

Beginner’s Tips

  • Make sure your hips are not lifting off.
  • Your arms can be either stretched out to the front, by your side, or hands underneath your forehead.
  • Breathe into your lower back.

How to do Child’s Pose

  • Start with Dandasana.
  • Then, one by one bend your knees and sit on the inner side of your feet in Vajrasana. knees spread mat distance apart.
  • Bend forward while keeping the spine long.
  • Walk your hands forward, and then lower your forehead to the floor.
  • If you can keep your arms parallel to the ground, let them rest by your sides. If you find this difficult, you can bring your arms around in front of you and clasp your hands together.
  • Allow yourself to remain here for 30 seconds to a few minutes. Exhale and slowly roll up the vertebrae back into place until you’re sitting in Vajrasana once more. You might also want to take a Child’s Pose break after any vigorous poses or sequence as a way of restoring balance within the body. Balasana is an essential part of any yoga practice

Mental Benefits of Child’s Pose

  • Helps to surrender mind and body.
  • Helps to deal with stress and anxiety.
  • Calming effect on the mind.
  • Rejuvenates the central nervous system.

Bottom Line

Balasana or child’s pose is a great beginner’s yoga pose because it stretches out many different areas of the body at once while also providing a relaxing and calming experience. This pose can be used actively to energize yourself or passively to calm down in between other poses. The benefits of this pose include relaxation for all parts.

Meera Watts
Meera Watts is the owner and founder of Siddhi Yoga. She is known around the world for her thought leadership in the wellness industry and was also recognized as a Top 20 International Yoga Blogger. Her writing on holistic health has appeared in Elephant Journal, CureJoy, FunTimesGuide, OMtimes and other international magazines. Meera is a yoga teacher and yoga therapist, though now she focuses primarily on leading Siddhi Yoga, blogging and spending time with her family in Singapore.

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