Constructive Rest – An Advent Gift to your Self

Join Tess Booth, my co-teacher, and I for this advent countdown of self-care through the Christmas craziness. It is a daily 20 minute commitment we are making to ourselves, knowing the huge benefits that this simple posture yields. Constructive Rest is the most portable and practical restorative pose as it can be done without any props and and requires no special yoga equipment but has a multitude of benefits. In other words you get a lot of bang for your buck.

Constructive Rest will balance out the constant battle that the nervous system has between ‘doing’ and ‘being’. It is a pose for bringing us back to centre and allowing the spine to realign and lengthen. All you need to do is lie down, bend the knees and place the soles of your feet evenly onto the ground and be still for a while or listen to my free audio guide to keep you there for the full length of time that it takes for the relaxation response to kick in.

Receive 4 support emails with extra information and audio tracks over this month of practicing daily Constructive Rest.

Subscribe now to support yourself through the Christmas period

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I know from Christmas past that however much I make an intention not to get involved in the speeding up and juggling that happens around this time of year, by the time I’ve attended the functions, supported the kids with their extra activities, sent off the cards and pressies to the Northern Hemisphere, organised the holidays with family meet ups and friends, made camping and food plans and wrapped up my work stuff for the year on top of the daily curve balls that life throws up, I often feel a great deal of tension physically, emotionally and mentally by  the time I sit down for Christmas lunch! 


This act of lying down, semi supine every-day will support me and I hope you too, on all those levels of being. Just 15-20 minutes a day will reveal untold benefits including these:

  • Energises and restores fatigued body and mind
  • Activates relaxation response in the nervous system
  • Creates grounding
  • Regulates and encourages good breathing
  • Encourages good digestion
  • Releases the psoas muscle
  • Restores a neutral spine…
  • …and can therefore relieve back pain
  • Stillness and connection with Self

It isn’t just a gift to yourself when you do this counter cultural act, it benefits all those around you. It is not selfish, it is compassionate and sensible. A yoga practice seeks to nourish us, to take care of ourselves and our energy regulation so that we can be out in the world in good relationship with others and ultimately offer out compassion and love to all those around us. Isn’t that the point of Christmas too? 

Prioritise your own wellbeing and schedule a pause for your self today. What are you waiting for?

Subscribe now to support yourself through the Christmas period

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Your first free audio guide for practicing Constructive Rest

To keep us all supported in this commitment, do comment below and share your experience or ask me any questions that the practice may bring up. You could also post your commitment on your own Facebook page and encourage others to join you.

Sam x


  1. A pause! This sounds soooooo good. I completely agree that it is so easy to get swept away. Thanks Sam and Tess, I will let you know how I get on!

  2. Hello restorative people 🙂

    Question answers…

    The when bit….
    I think afternoon some time will flow best for me
    I decided to commit this afternoon so todays will happen soon, in lieu of dinner actually.

    The where bit…
    my bedroom floor where I do my morning breathing practise or maybe in my healing room which is a special vibe too

    The intention bit…
    To reconnect to my Self so I know what I need and how I am doing
    To ground
    To be calm
    To slow down

    over and out 🙂

  3. I did it ! I liked it!
    Loved the audio. Thank you.

    Legs were hoping to flop out after 5 or 10min. I found it an effort of sorts to keep them in right place.


    1. Hi Dawn, Congratulations on doing your first practice today! The welcome email that I sent you had suggestions for knees flopping in or out. Tomorrow you could try a folded blanket placed firmly over the thighs and knees or try supporting the legs from underneath with pillows or a bolster and rolled up blanket . See the photos in your support email : ) Let me know how you get on. Sam : )

  4. Hi, my name is Tess. I’ve begun my intention to rest for the next 30 days. I have practiced constructive rest before more sporadically but each time experienced quite profound release of stress, tension and pain in my body. It’s just amazing how much relaxing can change your physiology. In committing to this I am prioritising self care and I’m particularly interested in the effects of the practice each day as a therapy for the tension and pain in my sacrum, pelvis, lumbar spine region. X

  5. So I practiced just before making dinner today while the kids were playing outside. Teaching 2 classes today and a couple of appointments and I was feeling seriously tired. My intention was for clarity and presence so I could teach my evening class…and magically that’s what I got after 20 mins of being in this pose. Yay!

  6. Leanne here, for me as I ‘the busy” summer season approaches in the hosp tourism industry I will need all the rest I can get to keep that smile on my dial for everyone, and me:) so commit to this 30 days dedicated resting might be tricky to fit in, I tend to like early morning when all is quiet except the birds. I counted my first one in my lovely class with Sam yesterday, I actually felt very invigorated after that class Sam, visualising the flame inside me thanks x

  7. Awesome practice Sam – thanks – I loved practicing with you. Loved your voice and pacing was just right. Ahhh – I will sleep well tonight now. Blessings and gratitude …. Neal xx

  8. Today was the first time for me . The body responding with gentle internal fluid movements. The breath like waves. AH !

  9. Amazing Sam. I’ve done my fifth practice today. I started on the last day of Nov, so I’ve missed one day so far. Wow – I had no idea how tired I was. This practice has opened my eyes to a few things. Usually if I’m feeling tired, I have a cup of tea and read through Twitter. Both those things are nice, but don’t help with tiredness at all! What I need is: REST! The practice has helped me to actually listen to what my body needs, rather than just trying to power through. As you say in your email today Sam, it is a revolution. Putting time aside to rest has made me feel less stressed. I hear people talking about how frazzled they feel, and it feels amazing (and slightly subversive!) to know that I have put a little time aside to care for myself. I’m looking forward very much to continuing this. Thanks xxx

    1. Brilliant Polly! It’s good to hear that this practice is serving you and maybe even making up for some sleep debt? Love knowing that we are sharing a practice across the world xx

  10. I am finding the early mornings still the best time for me, which is a bit weird as I have just woken up from 7 hours rest! I tie it in with some yoga and exercises. But it’s nice then, quiet, no enquiring kids or partner, the cats find me tho. I use it as a way to focus in on the day, considering how my body is feeling, the weather for the day, what has to be done, adjusting a sad mood maybe, why?. Waking up slowly, the breath sparking up my internal flame like a gas fire spreading warming the whole unit! Ready to tackle the day with a smile. I did it on the beach rabbit island one day, just biked from nelson, lovely lying in sun taking in its warmth, the sounds, but sand is not as comfy as a blanket on the floor. Right time to get up:)

    1. Love hearing about your morning practice Leanne. Such a good way to prepare your self for whatever the day will bring.

  11. My right leg got the attention it was craving through the practice. It helped me see the need for balance – right side, left side. Right ribs, left ribs , right arm left arm, right ear left ear. And so on . The body scan gave me insight into the flu like symptoms I have been experiencing over past 24 hours. And allowed reorientation to take the opportunity to REST today. Thank you,Sam.

    1. Thank you Dawn and well done for showing up with your Self everyday. Have a restful Christmas! x

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