Front Corpse

Definition - What does Front Corpse mean?

Front Corpse pose in yoga is a neutral pose that takes place in the prone position on the mat. It is a beginner pose that can be practiced in place of or in addition to svanasana as a place of rest.

To practice front corpse pose, start by lying face-down on the mat. The important part of this pose is to get into a comfortable position, so don’t be afraid to use props like bolsters and pillows under the pelvis and chest to lift up off the floor slightly and decrease points that may be bothered lying face down. The head can be turned to either side, or if the chest is lifted, it can stay in a neutral position. The arms lay comfortably beside the body while the back and lower body muscles soften.

Front corpse pose is known in Sanskrit as adho mukha savasana, which means "downward facing corpse."

Yogapedia explains Front Corpse

Even though a restorative position is meant for rest, front corpse pose contributes to many physical benefits. This position relieves pressure on the discs in the spine and can bring space into the lumbar spine when the chest is supported by pillows or bolsters. If practiced with the head in a neutral position, this pose can help alleviate a stiff or tense neck muscles. By lying face-down while breathing, it forces air into the back parts of the lungs therefore increasing their capacity.

As with any resting posture, it is important to find a comfortable place to ease the body and mind. Front corpse pose should be held for two to five minutes and only moving to adjust the body if needed. Here is also a great place to start or end the practice acknowledging any intentions and/or calming the mind with meditation. Breathing should be deep and rhythmic as all the tension is alleviated from the body and the muscles become supple and limber.

It is necessary for the practice to include moments of rest and this restorative pose can help with calmness of the body and mind.

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