Friday, August 6, 2010

muscularity and Flexibility...stability and freedom

On Wednesday night I went to a bouldering rock climbing completion that was put on after the outdoor retailer show. It was great I watched the women’s and men’s bouldering finals. It was insane to see these incredible and beautiful climbers. As I was driving to the completion I was very interested in seeing their level of flexibility since I assumed they were likely to be very muscular. Watching I could see there were a few climbers who were very muscular and stable. They could hold on to those tiny holds, but the holds were very spread out and some of these strong climbers didn’t have the flexibility/freedom to make the reach with their arms or legs. I also watched climbers who were very bendy and flexible they could through their leg up but didn’t have enough strength to make the move. However the majority of the climbers had this fantastic balance of strength/stability with flexibility/freedom. These climbers were a delight to watch. I could clearly see that the climbers who were balanced in stability and flexibility had the opportunity for the most freedom (they had many more options available to them for solving the problem), they also expressed the most shri (beauty) and they moved with grace. It was a magnificent experience.
In our practice on the mat we want to develop stability, strength and physical integration (muscular energy) but we want to balance that with expansion, flexibility and freedom (organic energy). Watching the climbing completion reminded me of the importance of balancing out our self when we practice on the mat so we don’t get so muscular and so stabile that we are unable to express our freedom, but at the same time we don’t want to get so loose and flexible that we are no longer safe and supported.

This was the focus of my class this morning at Flow Yoga. We worked on creating strength and flexibility in the shoulders and in the hamstrings. I reminded the students that finding this balance is very personal. We all bring something unique to our mat…our self! For example, I am very flexible and I have been working for over a year to bring more stability and strength into my poses. When I do a forward for like paschimothanasana (seated forward bend) I could just lay and rest on my legs but if I do that all my freedom and shakti escapes my body so I need to contain it by bringing more strength (muscular energy) into the pose, by scoping my tail (outer spiral) bone and rounding my back. On the other hand my husband is more muscular so he wants to focus on extending our and lengthening (organic energy) he wants to emphasis sticking the sit bones toward the back of the room (inner spiral) and the heart toward the front of the room.

The class was really fun. The students were rocking it with great studentship, dedication, and even some laughter.

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Intention and Testimonials

Testimonials & My Intention

My Intention It is my intention as a yoga teacher to help you bring more health and vibrancy to your body, ease and alertness to your mind...