Child's Pose

Sanskrit: Balasana

Child’s Pose (Balasana) is forward fold which is generally used as a resting or grounding pose in your yoga class. Often, your practice will begin with a quiet period in Child’s Pose, during which you will be invited to settle and prepare for the practice ahead, establishing the connection with your breath. It will often be sequenced as a rest pose after more challenging poses or vinyasa sequences. However, not everyone likes Child’s Pose - so do feel free to take a variation such as Easy Seat (Sukhasana) or Constructive Rest if you prefer to.

Two variations of Child’s Pose are given below: one with knees wide, the other with knees together.

Rest in Child’s Pose whenever you need to during your practice. You don’t need your teacher’s permission, just drop in to the pose and take the time you need to reconnect to your breath and your practice.

How to get into the pose:

Wide knee variation:

  • From kneeling bring your knees as wide as your mat and your big toes together to touch.

  • Exhale and allow your ribcage to descend towards the mat.

  • Let your hips rest towards your heels.

  • Reach your arms forward, bring your head to the mat or a block, and allow your shoulders to relax.

  • Take deep breaths then walk your hands back in and come out of the pose slowly on an inhale.

Closed knee variation:

  • From kneeling bring your knees as wide as your mat and your big toes together to touch.

  • Exhale and allow your ribcage to descend towards your thighs.

  • Let your hips rest towards your heels.

  • Reach your arms behind you, bring your head to the mat or a block, and allow your shoulders to relax.

  • Take deep breaths then bring your hands under your shoulders and come out of the pose slowly on an inhale.

Remember to create the balance between effort and ease in your pose.

How long to stay in the pose:

  • A minimum of five breaths but as long as you like

Gaze (Drishti)

  • Third eye

  • Nose

Modifications you can take to make this pose more accessible:

  • Use a rolled or folded blanket in the space between your heels or calves and the backs of your thighs

  • Use a block to support your head if it doesn’t reach the mat

  • Bring your chest down and hug a bolster, turning your head to one side (this is very restorative and you could stay here for an extended period of time)

Contraindications / Cautions:

  • Be very cautious with Child’s Pose if you have a knee injury or are recovering from knee surgery