Somatic wisdom (video)

As I was coaching client teams online the other day, I realized I needed to “pandiculate” out of my highly focused state starting at a screen and focusing to a more relaxed state (taking a little walk and getting fresh air).

I was inspired to create a small video on this, and next month I am planning to offer a series of short (20-30) interactive “break-shops” on somatics. The idea that it is short enough for your lunch break or coffee break.

Many people take “stretch breaks” in their day but without understanding the somatics and leaning into the tension and then releasing, we can have stretch reflex that actually cause muscles to tighten even further.

A snip of the video from my “dining room” studio. 🙂

See the short (3 min) video here.

Much love,

My book will contain links to audio and video content that can help my intended audience to embody the practices I advocate. Creating those materials is really fun for me, almost as much as writing the first draft. I guess I’m a teacher at heart… 😉

Cristy

P.S. I am not as actively maintaining this blog, as my client list has started to expand. If you want to receive an occasional (usually 1-3 times month) email with free resources like workshops and other sources of inspiration to embody greater joy, ease and fulfillment in body and soul, sign up here.

How NOT to do yoga

Hi Friends,

It is Friday! I wish you an excellent weekend ahead!

I was thinking about my yoga “evangelism” and some subtle things I have not explored on this blog about the differences in types of yoga. Based on some questions/comments that readers have contributed, and my recent bad experience with a hot vinyasa class which actually triggered my fight/flight/freeze response, I thought it would be valuable to comment further.

On Monday I was working in the morning and missed the hatha yoga class I planned o attend. I had a hankering for a class so I searched the available ones at the different branches of my gym and found a noon class not too far away. It was vinyasa (or flow) yoga, a class in which there tends to be continuous motion throughout the class.

This particular gym tends to pair upbeat rock music with the flow sequences, at least after the teacher walks through the sequence once or twice. Then we flow on our own, and sometimes the music is turned up. In this particular class the music was turned up so loud I actually got triggered, and immediately considered leaving the room, it felt so loud and uncomfortable.

relaxing kitty
Photo credit link

I nearly left the room but first I searched for the teacher and asked if she could turn it down slightly. She did. The class was “energetic” but I took breaks as necessary during the flow and did not get caught up with what everyone else was doing. I made the practice my own and adapted to what my body needed, as I have been taught by several wise teachers. 

After the class I explained what had happened to the teacher. She told me not all teachers at the gym would be as willing to accommodate but that they could supply earplugs if they were needed. I was so shocked by this, given what I have come to value about yoga, and its value on soothing my nervous system and coming back to the body.

The practice I am most fond of can be described as hatha yoga. At this gym, the most similar practice is called “root” and at other venues it may be described as mindful yoga.  I also enjoy soma yoga, which is a process of teaching the body to let go of involuntary patterns of holding that we sometimes develop subconsciously over time.

The point of this comment today is that not all yoga classes are the same. It is important to give yourself the opportunity to try different classes and different teachers to see what works best for you. While there may be classes that are challenging in terms of developing your strength, all good teachers understand that some students may need to adapt their practice.

YOU are the only one who knows what is right for your body. No teacher should ever push you beyond your limits. They simply cannot know if you have injuries or vulnerabilities that affect your practice. Even if you spend an entire hour laying on the mat in savasana (corpse pose) and focus on your breathing, you have done your yoga.

Cheers,

cristy@meximinnesotana.com