Updated: Apr 29
Practice makes progress..... Old patterns can be difficult to break. They can be found in all areas of our lives, including our yoga practice. As a young ballet dancer, I spent hours in front of a mirror working to perfect every movement. My yoga practice began in a gym setting, also surrounded by mirrors. This setting allowed me to quickly learn about proper alignment, but I often found myself focused on making things look 'perfect' which made my practice feel rigid. With time and more practice, I now tune into finding alignment that feels best in my body and often choose an internal drishti with eyes closed. This internal gaze allows me to soften and find ease and joy in my efforts. What feels best in my body is not always what is being cued by the teacher or what looks the prettiest or most perfect in the mirror or in a photograph. I give myself full permission now to let the sensations in my body guide my movements. Yoga practice is a focused discipline, but one that still allows space for creativity and joy through movement. I love finding new ways to move my body and opportunities to create new asanas. Asana is often defined as a yoga posture or a yoga pose. The very first asana was a seat for meditation. I love to think of asana as an empty vessel. We move our bodies with breath into different shapes while we tune in and explore sensations. We can choose what we want and need to fill our vessel with in each moment. We can hold an intention, a dedication, a mantra or simply focus on building & containing life force, or 'prana,' with our breath led movements. I encourage you to find softness and moments of play and creativity in your own practice in the privacy of your home. There's no need to work towards perfection. Progress will follow each practice and each breath when you are fully present with your body's needs.