Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Leading with the HEART

I have tweaked my shoulder lately from to much play with my hula hoop. When I practice yoga and do body work I put so much attention on my alignment but when I dance with my hoop and try to learn more tricks I forget about my alignment and as a result little shoulder injury. To heal I am coming back to alignment techniques like shoulder and skull loop, that serve my body so well. These are the last two out of the seven loops of Anusara yoga. The loops are considered minor principles are come after performing the "major" universal principles of alignment of open to grace, muscular energy, inner spiral, outer spiral, and organic energy (in that order).

Here are some thoughts I have had on these loops:

It has been really interesting to watch my posture transform throughout my yoga journey and especially since starting practicing Anusara. If I look at pictures years ago my shoulders are rounded folder and I can see the lack of confidence and insecurity in myself. Not to mention the pain I would get in my shoulders and neck. Now my shoulders are naturally stay integrated in my back and I can see the new confidence and self-worth I now have. However... even though my shoulders are drawn back my head is still held forward (some body workers call this “forward carriage”). Here is a picture from three years ago, my shoulders are somewhat on my back but my jaw and head are in the front jutting out past my heart.

When I do skull loop in conjunction with shoulder loop my head moves back, heart lifts, low belly tones, forehead and eye lids soften, back of neck releases... When my head is sticking more forward then my heart like in this picture it reminds me of running my life from my head and being disconnected from my heart. The mind and intellect is great stuff, I think we have the power to think for a reason but I want to use my mind to help me navigate the world from my heart. Performing shoulder loop and skull loops lifts places my heart more forward then my head. That’s a powerful place for me to be.

5 aspects of shoulder loop:

1. Side bodies long

2. Inner body bright/ outer body soft

3. Hyoid bone back

4. Shoulder loop

5. Extend up the back of the neck from the soft palate of the mouth

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