Tuesday, April 23, 2013

grace and yoga

Because grace is a beautiful thing. Thank you Misty Pittman, you are the picture of grace.

I found these words from yoga teacher, Jason Crandell, in my FaceBook newsfeed today, “The integrity of your movement is more important than your range of movement”, and I realized that this is exactly what I’ve been trying to speak to in recent classes.


How can we invite this into our yoga practice, and into our lives?  How can we show up in a way that is gentle?

And why is this even important?

When I think of grace, I think of ease, compassion, and humbleness.  I think of going with the flow.  When we are practicing these elements, we are living in a way that is harmonious and authentic. 

We begin to notice ourselves as kinder. 

With grace, there is less struggle and awkwardness.  We are not resisting or forcing.  We can loosen our grip on whatever it is we are fighting with and begin to accept.

The yoga mat is a perfect place to begin to explore this.  How often do we push ourselves into poses without paying attention to the transitions?  How many of us tell ourselves stories about how our limitations on the mat determine our worth?

What if we thought about our yoga practice as a dance and our breath the rhythm that carries us?  Moving slowly, stretching our bodies joyously, inhaling deeply as arms are swept overhead and exhaling fully as we float our upper body forward into a soft fold.

Take time to establish alignment, setting down hands and feet as if this was an honored ritual.  Breathe fully, creating expansion, without taking the breath to a place of rigidity.  Be gentle in your thoughts and words. 

These elements of grace soften us and make us whole.  We feel calmer.  Even if we lose our balance, we recover with a smile.

Start here, on the mat.  Feel alive and carry that into your daily life, bringing that quality of grace into your relationships and work.  Enjoy going with the flow, even you do have two left feet.

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