Hello Yogis, and welcome to June!
We are overjoyed that many of you, slowly but surely, are returning back to the studio for in-person classes; it is truly a delight to see so many of your smiling faces! Practicing at home is great, however, coming to class and moving in and out of postures with our fellow yogis just can’t be beaten! Whether you’ve been rolling out your mat daily or perhaps only sporadically, coming to the studio or practicing at home, now is a great time to talk about the importance of alignment, on and off the mat.
On the mat, correct alignment in our yoga postures is important to build both strength and flexibility. When properly aligned, many poses invite us to engage and build our smaller, typically overlooked muscles. In turn, those larger muscles that are often the first ones to the party are asked to take a step back or maybe even take a stretch break. However, when we are newer to asana practice, or when we’ve been habituated into a misalignment during certain poses, we have a tendency to get into that pose by doing what’s familiar: relying on our larger muscles for strength and allowing our smaller muscles to hide. In other words, we compensate for our lack of strength and mobility and therefore are misaligned in the pose.
Correctly aligned postures give us another huge benefit of opening up our energy channels, known in yoga as nadis, throughout the body. Nadis, of which we have 72,000(!), follow the nervous system of the body and are key to good health and wellness. When we have congestion in one of our energy channels, the communication system between the spine and brain, and possibly one of our organs, is disrupted. This block is known as a granthi in yogic speak. As the granthi becomes denser, the body experiences dis-ease. Correct alignment in our yoga postures is inviting us to move into these blocks, consciously and deliberately, helping to free up these stuck energies to integrate back into our bodies for greater health and wellness.
Okay, so I could go on, and I probably will in next month’s blog, which will address taking correct alignment off our mats and into our daily lives and relationships. But are you persuaded on the importance of correct alignment? Are you intrigued enough to learn more? A great start is coming to see us for class at the studio! Want even more? Come to our alignment workshop this month, receive adjustments and learn more about correct alignment for YOUR body!