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My Blog

The Subtleties of Practice


“It’s in the details”

In any one my typical classes, you will begin to notice there are certain verbal cues I call out over and over again as we move through the postures. 

“Find the sitting bones.”  “Draw the navel inward and up.”  “Soften the throat/the eyes/the lower points on the shoulder blades.”  “Root down through the four corners of your feet.”  And most of all, “Breathe.” 

Though I may sound like a broken record, as I look around the room, these are the key cues needed to help you surrender and soften more deeply into the posture.  To help you feel more grounded, light, strong, or open deeply in the pose.  This allows you to find better alignment, which leads to a better flow of energy, as well as more strength and ease within the posture. 

Over the next few weeks, I will be taking the time to go over key cues, why they are important, a posture or two to practice your awareness of the cue, and how they help you to find your best posture for YOUR body.

“FIND THE SITTING BONES”
Anatomically, the ischial tuberosities, are the two boney protrusions at the base of the pelvis.  To find your sitting bones, sit on the floor and wiggle a bit from side to side, you will become aware of these boney features pressing into the floor.  When sitting without awareness, sometimes we allow the lower back to round, which can draw you to the backside of the sitting bones.  Likewise, if you allow the spine to arch, you come to front of the sitting bones.  These two postures put undue stress on the low back over time, especially if we habitually find ourselves in these postures.  Both these postures also tilt the pelvis and draw the spine away from a neutral position.  By rooting down through the sitting bones, you can begin to find center, feeling strong, grounded and solid.  You will feel a natural lengthening in the spine.  It also helps you to bring your awareness of your seated posture into your everyday life:  sitting in a chair, car, on the floor.  Body awareness folks!!!

Practice:

Come into Sukasana, or Easy Seated Pose.  
“Find your sitting bones.”  
Feel where you are resting on the sitting bones naturally.  Rock a little from side to side, maybe a little forward and back.  You want to find center on your sitting bones.  Allow them to come into contact with the floor (or blanket or block) you are sitting on.  Furthermore, you want your weight to be evenly distributed so you can feel solid on the ground.  Take a several breaths.  Find center physically and within. 

How do you feel?  Did the breath change?  The sensations in the body?  How about the state of your mind? 

Maybe the breath flowed with more ease.  Perhaps the body felt active and in stillness at the same time (such an amazing sensation!).  Even more, did your mind move toward stillness with a bit more ease?  These are all benefits of better alignment and body awareness. 

How does this cue affect your practice?

1 Comment to The Subtleties of Practice:

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