Urdhva Padmasana

Turn your lotus position upside down. No worries if full lotus isn’t available for you yet, whatever your variation is works – full lotus, half lotus or cross-legged. Even if full lotus is preferred as it makes the posture much more compact and stable, we all know that it’s not always accessible.

Once in the posture and your thighs are parallel to the floor, press the knees into the hands (yes, this way!). Start to lengthen your spine (feels sooooo good!) and lift your chin slightly, so there’s no pressure on your neck.

For the next few breaths, allow your world to move this way. Upside down. Notice what‘s different – is there any difference?

Physically this posture does a lot – it opens the hips, strengthens the shoulder frame, the muscles along the spine, the erector spinae is activated, just to name a few. In addition, your inner organs benefit, particularly as this pose utilizes specific pressure points at the thyroid and the kidneys.

As in all inversions, the blood flow increases and the brain is offered a surge of oxygen.
Don’t you wonder if you would suddenly feel your thoughts streaming with better clarity. If holding this posture a bit longer, maybe even a few minutes, you will notice that all your doubts, blank mental notes, and confusing stimulus will clear up.

Really? Well, you tell me, try it 🙂

Home Practice

Have you established a home practice yet? No? Let me tell you why this is a great idea and what helps to set it up. It’s so much more than just move and stretch your muscles! Commitment to a home practice – ideally 6 days a week (I know…!)  is a commitment to self-discipline and part of a transformation into a healthy body and mind. It will be the start of something great, it will change you. And yes, the difficult part is showing up on the mat. The easy part is, it doesn’t matter what you’re doing and how long, as long as you’re practicing. Even this will change over time!

First things first – why it’s so damn good for you

  • You will develop a personal discipline, which won’t stop at your mat, but support you in all parts of your life
  • You will create a healthy habit, which might make you more aware of health in general
  • It will allow you to tune and play your own instrument: the body
  • It will soothe your soul, feed your spirit and make you a more efficient practitioner in the world
  • You will learn and appreciate to be alone

Bring it on – how you will succeed

  • Set a fix time that suits your daily schedule. Even if morning first thing is most efficient and recommended, it has to fit into your life so you can stick to it. Of course it can be different during the week and on the weekends! Whatever works for you.
  • Create an inspiring surrounding – if you have a spare room, decorate it to feel good there. If not, no problem at all, make it nice wherever you enroll your mat. Maybe a nice view out, you might want to light a candle, turn music on, diffuse essential oils, whatever it is that makes it inspiring for you, will make it easier.
  • Be committed to show up, no matter how long. Start easy. Define how many times a week and go from there. Even if everything inside tells you no no no, not today! Roll out your mat and practice.
  • There might be days you just sit down to breathe for 5 minutes. Alternatively, a 10 minutes meditation, maybe a 60 minutes asana practice. That’s great, job done.

Take it easy, but stick to your commitment! It is a huge step, but so worth it…. Go for it yogi! Remember, you don’t have to start at 100%, a step by step approach will help to slowly get used to it. Whenever you don’t manage to stick to your commitment, notice how this feels. Laugh and call it a day, you’re not supposed to be wonderwoman or superman 🙂

What if…

… you forget about yoga being a fitness regime?

… you tune in to connect with your pure being?

… you allow things to unfold and happen?

In your practice, aim to be like a child. Open, curious, pure and free. Thus, your heart leads you to your destiny, instead of your ego trying to stop you by whispering all the can’t do’s. In the yoga room, on your mat, you are safe and protected. Forget about all the layers and roles and start the journey leading to your beautiful pure self.

No one cares whether you can touch your toes or put your leg behind your head. True yoga is about how you shape your life, not how you perform postures. The moment your practice turns into a living practice of life, not a lifestyle, you become aware of the precious gift life is as such.

What if…. you show who you truly are? Start on the mat and bring it into all other parts of your life. There’s no such thing as separation. Yoga is oneness. No matter what.

Katonah Yoga

Four intense training days of Katonah Yoga. A great concept based on Taoist theory, geometry, magic, mythology, metaphor, and imagination.

A body in an asana becomes origami, form becomes function, and measurement becomes key. 

My body was challenged, naming rather basic postures can’t do’s, while granting me break-throughs in poses I never imagined I could ever do. Yes, I had my feet behind my head, shoulders and arms in front. Ups.

My mind was flipping between an overload of information, chaos and structure. Love and hate, happiness and frustration. Struggles and insights. The entire bloody package. 

Loads of stuff to absorb and integrate, input for my own growth as well as my teachings. Lots to work with and I’m keen to do so. However, it was rather a surprise to feel kind of confirmed, that my Ashtanga home practice is my perfect match. It showed me what Ashtanga did for me, through me, with me, during the last couple of years. A huge transformation. Which is supposed to go on, with new options to organize myself – my stability, ability and imagination.

Every method, every approach has its individual beauty, there is no right or wrong; however, it always feels so good to add some new ingredients to the meal. 

Bon appétit!

Twist

Let’s twist babes out there!

Gently move with your breath – lengthen with your inhale, twist with your exhale. Twists help to rejuvenate your spine by restoring your spine’s natural range of motion. They will cleanse your organs, and stimulate circulation. Not to mention the cleansing and refreshing effect on the torso organs and associated glands!

Get your blood flowing and boost your energy!

Prasarita padottanasana

Prasarita padottanasana (D) – stability, productivity and self-acceptance.
Think big, think scalable. Start inside. You are the true source of the cozy security you long for. Be secure in yourself rather then searching for security outside. Turn your energy inward, get grounded in all of your bodies, the physical, emotional, and spiritual one, so you are able to embrace life and live your truth.
Think beautiful, fertile abundance.