Yogic Sleep Pose  - Yoganidrasana


Yogic Sleep Pose or Yoganidrasana (YoG-AA-nid-RAA-sa-nuh) is derived from the Sanskrit word yoga, meaning unite, Nidra meaning sleep, and asana meaning pose. This pose is done in a reclining posture and works wonders on the back muscles. It is also helpful on the pelvis, inner thighs, chest, hips, calves and hamstrings.
The Yogic Sleep Pose is believed to be performed by the sleeping yogis, where the legs are placed behind the back, and the body’s trunk is between the thighs. This pose completely stretches the body and is a common part of the ashtanga yoga practice. It not only strengthens the various body parts but also improves flexibility. This, combined with meditation, improves the quality of sleep. Yoganidrasana pose is challenging to achieve, especially for beginners, but it is worth the effort.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1
First, come into the Savasana (Corpse pose)after that breathe in along with keeping your knees to the chest.
Step 2
Now, cross your one ankle over the other ankle make some space at the knees.
Step 3
Place your legs towards the direction of the head and reach your hands forward in between your legs.
Step 4
Keep your hands on your ankles or your lower calves and uphold (continue) to pull your legs towards the crown of the head. After that, lift your head with your shoulders off from the floor. Make sure, to keep your neck is free from strain and note that not to crowd your shoulders upward.
Step 5
Breathe in as you place your feet and ankles over your head (for pulling your head and shoulder by the space in the legs).
Step 6
Now, push your feet towards the direction of the floor over your head and keep the shoulders forward for pressing into the backs of the knees.
Step 7
Keep your heels in a way that you rest your head on them for support and comfort.
Step 8
Next step, make the prayer position by hands at close to the sternum. Interlock your fingers together to remain in the position. Raise your chest to open the lungs slowly.
Step 9
Look upward and remain in the position for 30 to 60 seconds with control breathing. .
Step 10
Put your elbows and shoulders back to the ground and come into the position of Savasana.

Benefits and Contraindications


Improves flexibility

Strengthens the core

Relaxes the body and mind

Boosts circulation

Enhances breathing

Improves the quality of sleep


Not suitable for beginners

Injury or medical condition on the back, hips, and shoulders


With high blood pressure

Heart problems

Modifications, Props and Tips

    You can modify the yogic sleep pose by using the simple yoga props:

  • Place afolded blanket under your headto block the direct contact from the ground in case you feeling pressure on the vertebrae while chest upraising in the complete yogic sleep pose.
  • In order to keep the leg behind the shoulder for longer, one can bind the legs with the help of ayoga strap. It will prevent the returning back of the leg in Yoganidrasana.
  • Practitioners who are unable or having difficulty in raising their head upward can practice this asana against the wall to rest head upon it. However, one can take the help of a second person as well to assist the posture.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there any anatomical limitations to Yoganidrasana?

Yogic Sleep Pose is an advanced-level yoga pose that requires a high degree of flexibility in the hips, hamstrings, and spine. Thus it takes time to master the pose. Nevertheless, there are certain anatomical limitations that can make it difficult or impossible for the practitioners to get into the pose. Among them:

  • Hip Joint Anatomy: The shape and structure of the hip joint can affect the range of motion in the hip, which is crucial for Yoganidrasana. Individuals with a shallow hip socket or a less mobile hip joint may find it challenging to perform the pose.
  • Hamstring Flexibility: Tightness in the hamstring muscles can limit the forward fold in Yoganidrasana. If you have tight hamstrings, you may need to work on gradually increasing their flexibility through regular stretching.
  • Spine Flexibility: The pose requires a significant degree of spinal flexibility, particularly in the lumbar and thoracic regions. Individuals with limited spinal mobility may find it challenging to perform the pose.
  • Age and Body Type: Age and body type can also affect your ability to perform Yoganidrasana. As we age, our flexibility decreases, and some body types may find it more challenging to perform the pose due to their natural body structure.

In summary, while some anatomical limitations may make Yoganidrasana more challenging, consistent practice and proper modifications can help individuals progress toward the pose. However, it is always essential to listen to your body and avoid pushing beyond your limits to prevent injury.

Are there any precautions to take when practicing Yoganidrasana?

It is important to listen to your body and avoid pushing beyond your limits to prevent injury. If you have any existing injuries or medical conditions, it is always best to consult with your healthcare provider before attempting the pose. Additionally, it is essential to warm up the body properly before attempting the pose to prevent injury.

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Iana Varshavska
Iana Varshavska
Website administrator

In love with yoga and everything that goes along with it. Iana is a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) who has completed the 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training Certification by the Yoga Alliance U.S. In addition to that, she is constantly studying and improving her skills in various aspects of yoga philosophy, yoga anatomy, biomechanics, and holodynamics.