Balasana also called child’s pose is one of the classic yoga asanas because it is very useful to free the body and mind from tensions.
In this article, we will deepen the origin and myth related to this position, how to perform it correctly, and its main benefits.
Table of Contents
- meaning and myth of balasana
- how to do the child’s pose
1. THE MEANING AND MYTH OF BALASANA
The term balasana comes from the Sanskrit bala = child and asana = position.
It is very often found within the yoga sequences to give breathing and rest after intense positions or in the opening or closing of the lesson.
Have you ever wondered what its deepest meaning is?
In the yogic tradition, the asanas have a deeper meaning, linked to myths and stories, which help us to interpret the message that the position wants to convey to us.
I must say that I am not an expert in yogic studies, but reading more about the meanings behind the movements with curiosity allows me to give a deep sense of the practice and better understand the message of yoga.
Speaking of balasana I found several narratives and in this article, I decided to briefly report two.
The first relates that Krishna, after his miraculous birth, was raised together with his brother Balaram. One day while they were playing together, Krishna picked up a handful of earth and ate it. Balaram, seeing him, ran to his mother Yashoda saying that his brother had swallowed the earth and was in danger of suffocating. The mother immediately ran to Krishna asking if he had eaten the earth and he replied no. Yashoda did not believe his son, who still had a muddy face and so asked him to open his mouth to check. What he found there was not the earth, but the entire universe with its galaxies floating in space.
In the second narration, it is said that the sage Markandeya had a vision about the end of the world. He saw the terrible scenario of the death of the world, during which all the rivers, mountains, forests, planets and stars are submerged by the sea. During the vision, once everything was submerged, he saw a banyan leaf floating and above a newborn. It was Vishnu. In view of this, the sage understood that death is only a cyclical event and that rebirth will always follow it. So impressed by the vision, Markandeya was sucked into the child’s body, where he saw the entire universe reforming.
But what do these two narratives focus on with balasana?
Both depict God as a child, acting in his purity and innocence, with playfulness. This arouses a feeling of unconditional and maternal love for those who approach him that allows access to the divine and the universe contained in it.
Entering the position of the child we can abandon ourselves in a version of ourselves capable of rediscovering the purity and absence of fear dictated by the ego that allows us to receive love and connection with the divine.
2. how to do child’s pose
- Kneeling on the mat, join your knees and toes
- Sit on your heels and come down with your shoulders and chest on your thighs relaxing your abdomen
- The forehead is resting on the ground and the arms are stretched out along the sides with the palms facing upwards
- Relax your shoulders and hips and let your back relax
- To exit the position, bring your hands back under your shoulders and sit back on your heels
There are several variations of the pose: you can try stretching your arms over your head to have a more relaxing effect or opening your knees and creating space for the abdomen and chest.
The position of the child when performed consciously gives excellent elongation to the back, ankles, and hips.
Helps calm the nervous system.
Breathing, also helps to reduce headaches
It is a very sweet and accessible position, but not recommended for pregnant women because it compresses the abdomen.
Those who have knee problems should pay attention and bring more attention using for example support under the buttocks or legs.
If you liked this article and it helped let me know in the comments. I’ll be happy to read what you think 🙂
Looking forward to the next article, keep practicing and stay inspired! See you on the mat.