Setting the ToneYoga Sutra 1.1
With Humility (an open heart and mind), we embrace the sacred study of Yoga. (Nischala Joy Devi in The Secret Power of Yoga)
Breath Awareness - bringing more awareness inside
- Bring awareness to the air moving into the nostrils and out of the nostrils. Observe the feeling, the temperature and any other qualities of the air. Observe the air for at least 4 breaths and you can really notice the qualities of the air coming in.
- Next, follow the air coming in the nostrils to the trachea (wind tunnel) and then follow the air out of the body back through the nostrils. Observe any qualities of the air like temperature, sound, pressure, etc.
- Finally folllow the air from the entry of the nostrils down to the lungs and then back out of the lungs through the nostrils. What sensations do you have physically? What is happening with your thoughts and are you feeling anything emotionally?
Benefits: Stretches the torso and provides a gentle twist which allows a release in tension in the lower back area.
Lie on right side of bolster with hip at the base of it. Torso should rest on the stack. Right arm should be under the head. The left arm can reach over the head to increase the stretch. Close your eyes and allow your body to relax and release any stress or tension. Slowly sit up and switch sides for the same amount of time.
Focus on your breath. Breath into your right side allowing that gentle stretch to travel from the tip of your fingers down your lower spine. Sense the left side of your body gently melting and surrendering to the ground beneath you. All tension and stress being recycled by mother earth. Sense the gentle letting go of your muscles and knowing that you are safe and supported. Breath deep and exhale soft and long.Supported Forward Fold
Place a block at lowest height and rest the bolster on it horizontally. Sit on a blanket in front of the props and swing your legs over top of the bolster. Adjust the height of the set-up to fit your legs. If your feet do not reach the floor, add a blanket or block. Before folding over the bolster, extend the spine on an inhale and then fold over. Rest hands either on the bolster or on the floor. Add support under arms and wherever else needed. Forehead rests on bolster maybe adding a neck roll. Stay for 5-10 minutes.
Props: 2 or more blankets, neck rolls, bolster for feet
Benefits: soothing to the nervous system, grounding, stimulates the
digestive system, gentle chest opener, lengthens the legs, ankles, releases the pelvis
Place a blanket for the chest to lie on as well as fill in the belly area and one blanket for a pillow. Lie belly down with legs extended, arms bent slightly out to the side. Can hold onto your neck roll to ground through the palms. Turn your head to one side and change direction when you need to. Additional support at the ankles. Add a blanket over top for comfort and warmth.