“A quiet mind helps strengthen the immune, digestive and nervous systems whilst being open to insight and wisdom” Carole Fogarty
This is my gift to you.
I have seriously fallen deeply madly in love with a delicious Restorative Yoga posture. It never fails to fill me with oodles of calm gentleness and a quiet mind – even if I’m feeling scattered or overwhelmed from living excessively in my head.
Sacred Cave is my “go to” place when life is verging on super crazy busy. It allows me to let go ….. and just be ….. for as long as it takes to feel more settled on the inside. Sacred cave is the deserving name I’ve given this awesome relaxing restorative yoga posture.
I discovered this restorative yoga posture only recently at a 4 day intensive with my restorative yoga teacher Judith Lassater from California. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect for me.
Please, please do try it. I promise you won’t be disappointed.
It’s effortless in essence – pure simplicity – yet communicates deeply to your whole body, mind and soul. I can not begin to explain how profoundly therapeutic and blissed out I feel even after only 5 minutes.
Besides, if it can relax my 14 year old son (pictured left) then it can relax anyone.
Calming qualities of the sacred cave:
Read the following slowly and really feel into the energy of the words.
All words have been intentionally chosen.
As you welcome the deeper wisdom of the words your body will intuitively receive the therapeutic benefits of this posture even more profoundly.
* The delicate tilting forward of the head encourages the mind to let go and surrender. Bowing in honour of your body.
* The soft acupressure on your forehead, gently moves the skin downwards (towards your nose) triggering your parasympathetic nervous system. The relaxation response is triggered.
* With your head feeling absolutely safe and supported (by the yoga bolster) you begin to notice a release from your facial muscles, tongue, jaw, neck and shoulders with each passive exhale. The letting go has begun.
* Next is a softening of your upper back as you allow it to round slightly as the relaxation process gracefully deepens. You now breath calmly into your back. The other half of your respiratory system.
* The relaxation felt in your neck and shoulders now flows down into your arms, through your palms reaching the tips of your fingers. Your hands and wrists can finally deeply rest.
* Your awareness gradually shifts to your belly. You allow it surrender, un-clench and flop. There’s no need to hold on anymore. It’s safe to sink – even more deeply into your body. Your belly feels relieved. It can now receive your inhales more fully.
Look at the picture above and do whatever you need to do to get comfortable and feel supported 100% by the bolster. There will be a magical balancing point where the head rests on the bolster without any worry of the bolster giving way. Place a blanket under your bottom if you need too. If that’s too uncomfortable then perhaps you’d prefer to sit on another bolster or a few cushions.
You might also prefer to have your legs straight out in front of you instead of crossed. The choice is yours. You may have to wiggle around a little until you’ve found a comfortable resting position.
Create the cave feeling – giving darkness to quieten your senses and nourish your nervous system.
Personally, I feel the weight and softness of the blanket is crucial as it greatly deepens the relaxation experience. It’s a bit like Goldie locks and the three bears. Not too heavy and not too light. Just the right weight to feel nurtured.
Most times I rest my hands in my lap, sometimes I feel drawn to hold them in prayer pose over my heart, a hand mudra or other times rest them on the floor. Do what feels right for you on the day.
With your body now comfortable you can drift off to your happy place, rest is silence, listen to the Flower Duet (I’m listening to it now as I write), repeat a mantra or simply follow your breath.
Stay until you feel a sense of relief.
Alternate if you don’t have yoga bolster:
It’s easy. You can get exactly the same effect with a chair and a few cushions or blankets.
Place 2, 3, 4 or more cushions on top of a chair so you can comfortably rest your forehead on the cushions without any neck or shoulder strain. Your body position should look much the same as if you had a yoga bolster for your forehead to rest on.
It’s that simple.
In case you were wondering I buy my yoga bolsters from Yoga King as I live in Australia. They are organic cotton and filled with kapok.
If you don’t live in Australia I’m sure if you google yoga bolsters lots of options will come up in your area . If in doubt about quality best to ask your local yoga studio.
Peace, love and chocolate, Carole
Email me anytime: firstname.lastname@example.org
As the Chinese say the breath is one thousand times more important than medicine. Improving the quality of your breathing can hugely improve the quality of your health and life. I personally think this is one of the best books on breathing and why I re-read it often. The Breathing Book by Donna Fahrini
You can also grab Carole’s daily rejuvenation tip by clicking here
Or Click here to zoom back over to Rejuvenation’s Lounge front page
Retreats with Carole – Italy and Bali.
Join Carole in Bali or Italy for a week of profound deep rest. Using the gentle support from blankets, yoga bolsters, blocks and eye pillows restorative yoga gently encourages the body to let go, release and sink deeply into a state of blissful deep, deep rest.
Whilst being in this deeply restful state you effortlessly release tensions, strengthen your immune system, deeply nourish your nervous system, calm the mind and improve digestive and organ function.