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Pose of the Month October:
Reclining butterfly

Get out all the props you have and get ready for some extreme relaxation in reclining butterfly. It's totally worth the effort!

It is a bit of work to set up, but amazing relaxation is guaranteed.

Days have become shorter, leaves are falling, temperature is dropping, and autumn is here. My favourite season of the year. Especially on the days when the sun is shining (when the rain is pouring not so much ;)). The colors outside are beautiful, but it’s also nice to be indoors with candles or a fire burning and a hot chocolate. Everything outside is changing which might also have an effect on you and how you feel, maybe a bit restless. For me it tends to feel like a period of maturation, where, like the leaf that falls, it is ok to let go of things. Being outside and completely loving it, before it gets cold (not that it ever gets really cold here, but still), but also being ok with couchpotato-ing when the weather is asking for it. This version of reclining butterfly pose is very nurturing. It might look a bit unstable but when you set it up in the right way it’s fantastic. If you would like to see and listen to a fully guided version, please visit my youtube channel here.
Reclining butterfly restorative yoga pose

How to practice
Reclining butterfly:

Set up the 3 blocks, two next to each other in the tallest position at the head end of the bolster. And one block on its side in the middle to support in incline of the bolster that you put on top. With the right kind of chair you can also use the back of the seat when you put the chair upside down on the floor to make that incline to support your bolster.

Place the blanket on the top end of the bolster, to support your head. Sit with your buttocks right at the lower end of the bolster to fully support your lower back as you bring yourself in a reclining position. You can place a blanket below your bottocks if the floor feel hard. Either use the other bolsters to support the knees or use the belt. When using the belt turn it into a secure circle and bring it around your waist, knees and lower legs. Do this in such a way that it will support the legs when you have the feet together, about half a meter away form your body and bringing your knees out to the side. Make sure the sensations there is not stretch sensation in the innerlegs.

Set up your head support in such a way that it honors the curve of your neck, without increasing it. You can also roll the lower corners of the blanket inwards an upwards to cradle your head, making sure it cannot roll sideways. Here is a video where I explain how to make the head cradle.

Be comfortable and enjoy!

Finally make sure your arms are supported. Either by the bolsters that also support the knees, or you use a blanket to cover yourself with, bringing the left side of the blanket underneath your left arm with your right hand, and the right side of the blanket underneath the right arm with the left hand. When you do to this snugly enough, your arms will be able to rest in the blanket. Use eye-pillows on your eyes or in your hands, this little bit of weight allows you to let go and relax a bit more.

When you have arrived in the pose and are comfortable, just be there and bring your attention to the movement of your breath and other sensation that you might notice in your body. Observe them, try not to interfere (unless there is pain then slowly come out of the pose). Feel fully supported by the bolsters and allow yourself release into them. Stay here for 5-20 minutes, being present.

When the time has come to come out of the pose, do this slowly and fully support yourself with your hands and arms. Draw the knees together with your hands and just sit for a few breaths before returning to the rest of you day.

If you enjoy these kinds of practices, check out my online self-guided journeys. I’ve recorded The Art of Not-Doing restorative packs for you. With these packs you can chose which 20 min restorative practice you want to practice. It also included separate audios with a different guidance once you’re in the pose, to vary the practice.
You can find them here in the shop.