Balasana Benefits and Steps to do Child's Pose

April 14,2024

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The modern day and age demands a lot out of you in terms of physical strength, emotional energy and mental faculties. Due to the same, you are bound to find yourself in a state of some form of exhaustion quite often. Constant exhaustion episodes can lead to burnout instances, which can open doors for a myriad of ailments as burnouts have an adverse effect on the immune systems of the individuals. These are the exact same things that yoga tries to tackle early on with a series of positions and movements which also help your mind and body form a deeper connection with oneself.

This article is going to be about one such yoga pose which can help you prevent such burnout episodes, keep the immunity levels of your body in general intact and even give you a moment of calm all at once. Let's embark on a journey into the depths of this elegant posture, exploring the benefits of Balasana, unraveling a step-by-step guide on how to perform the Child's Pose, delving into the anatomy of Balasana, addressing important considerations regarding when not to perform the Child's Pose, and finally, addressing common questions and doubts that may arise along the yogic journey.

What is Balasana a.k.a Child Pose

Balasana is a Sanskrit term which has two parts. While the first part, Bala translates to the word “Child”, Asana means pose, which is why Balasana is also known as the Child pose. In the context of this topic, Bala specifically refers to a toddler who has not even begun climbing the steps of mental, physical and emotional maturity. 

One of the reasons why this position gets a name like that is that when the practitioner performs the pose, he/she looks like a toddler who is requesting a toy while trotting around on the floor. Another reason why the pose has got such a name is that in some ways, this position also lets you connect to your “inner child”. 

As compared to many of the other yoga poses, Balasana is a relatively simple Yoga position as the primary objective of this asana is to create a few moments of calm for the student as well as let them relax, rejuvenate and recover from any kind of emotional injury they must have sustained off late.

What Are The Benefits Of Balasana a.k.a Child Pose

Some of the benefits of Balasana also known as child pose are as follows:

Balasana Helps You Centre Yourself: Since this Yoga position is an easy one and focuses on rest and relaxation, it creates a moment of calm and tranquillity for the student, during which they can either choose to recuperate, mentally regroup or even take a moment to center oneself.

Balasana Reduces Your Stress Levels: When a student performs the Balasana, they will sense the stress and tension simply leaving their body and it puts all the major muscles in a relaxing state. On the biology front, Balasana is also known for reducing secretion levels of cortisol, which is also known as the stress hormone in your body.

Balasana Can Help You Fight Diabetes: Diabetic patients have found it easier to manage their condition after becoming regular practitioners of Balasana. They have been able to do so because they have also been able to get their stress levels under control. Given that high stress and anxiety levels are the primary cause of either an onset of an exacerbation of diabetes, the Balasana ends up having somewhat of a direct positive impact on its diabetic patients.

Balasana Can Prevent Heart Attacks: Balasana almost directly regulates blood pressure, which reduces the risk of any kind of cardiac episode in the future.

Balasana Helps You Fight Fatigue: Balasana activates the relaxation response and simultaneously curbs the stress response of your body while activating your limbic system, which helps in reduction of episodes involving fatigue, titration or depression.

How To Do Balasana a.k.a Child Pose

As mentioned before, Balasana is one of the simpler Hatha Yoga poses, which means that it can be done to near perfection if one follows the step-by-step guide which could be found below:

Balasana Step 1: Sit on your mat in a kneeling position

Balasana Step 2: Transition into the table pose by putting a good portion of your upper body weight onto your palms which should be at least three feet away from their corresponding feet and not in alignment with them.

Balasana Step 3: Exhale and then lower your hips to your heels while reaching for the floor with your forehead.

Note: At this point, if you are finding the position to be slightly uncomfortable, you can always spread your knees apart for added comfort, since the whole point of this pose is to be able to rest and relax. Additionally, at this point, your arms are right in front of you, but you can also keep them stacked on top of each other under your forehead or right besides your body with palms facing upward.

Balasana Step 4: Press your belly against your thighs and then inhale deeply. After that, hold that position for anywhere between 4-12 slow breaths, depending on your comfort level.

Balasana Step 5: Retreat to the position as described in step 1 by first placing your palms on the ground and in line with your shoulders and then taking a deep inhale while pushing the upper body back to its position in step 1 with the help of the palms.

Perform anywhere between 5-10 repetitions of the same for best results, depending on your comfort level.

When To Practise Balasana

Balasana can either be performed in the morning before your breakfast or at night time on an empty stomach. What’s more, it can be performed either in dilation or as a part of a yoga regime.

Balasana contraindications

There are certain cases in which you should avoid or rethink your idea of performing Balasana. They are as follows:

  • If you have recently injured your knee, hips, shoulders or ankles, you should stay away from Balasana.
  • If you have had surgeries done anywhere in the lower half of your body, avoid doing the Balasana.
  • If you are pregnant and are at the stage where the baby bump is fairly prominent, you must avoid doing the Balasana.
  • Avoid Balasana if you have delivered your baby with the help of a caesarean section operation and are in postnatal care.
  • Students with Diarrhoea should definitely avoid Balasana.
  • Avoid Balasana if you have spondylitis,
  • If you have a blood pressure issue, avoid touching your forehead to the ground and place a handful of bolsters between your head and the ground for support.

Anatomy of Balasana a.k.a Child Pose

Given that the Balasana is a relaxing pose, there is very little stretching and contracting happening while performing the same. This pose, in fact, puts all of your major upper body muscles to rest, and especially the ones that are in the back. In addition, the abductor and adductor (outer and inner thigh) muscles also get to relax as well.

The primary upper body muscles groups which are put at ease are:

Trapezius (The upper back)

Rhomboids (The muscles that connect the spine to the shoulder blades)

The Posterior Deltoids (The portion of your back which rests right underneath your shoulders)

Note: One may also feel a stretch in the quadriceps as well as hips, which is normal. In addition to it all, the student will also feel a passive stretching sensation across his/her body.

Frequently Asked Questions About Balasana a.k.a Child Pose

Why Is It Called Balasana

The Balasana is a Sanskrit term which has two parts. While the first part, Bala means child, Asana, which is the second half of this word, translates to “Pose”, hence the Balasana is also known as the child pose. However, the main reason behind the name is the fact that while executing, the posture of the student will resemble that of a toddler asking for his/her toys.

What are the techniques of Balasana?

Balasana with bolster between the knees: This Balasana variation is for those students who cannot kneel on the ground without their knees hurting. As a result, the students perform the pose with the help of a bolster between their knees for added support.

Balasana with bolster below the feet: If your upper toes are stretching too much and are hence a source of discomfort for you, you can place a bolster under your feet as well.

Balasana with hands stacked above each other underneath the forehead: In this Balasana variation, the student stacks both his palms in a cylindrical shape on top of each other and then rests his/her forehead on top of it in order to provide more support to the head as well as the neck.

Balasana with arms placed alongside the body: in this variation, the hands are stacked right next to the body and the palm is facing upward. This version allows for the arms to rest as well.

Balasana with a brick in front of the forehead: You can also perform Balasana with a brick that will go where you will rest your head. This will help you prevent putting undue stress on your trapezius.

How Can One Get Better At Balasana

One can get better at Balasana with regular practice, diligence and a little bit of will to play around with the pose. If you would like to revisit the steps once again, you can always visit BalanceGurus for the same.