“It is through the alignment of the body that I discovered the alignment of my mind, self and intelligence.” B.K.S. Iyengar
Renowned yoga teacher, B.K.S. Iyengar based his system of yoga on proper alignment. He backed up his methods with theory that resonated not just when he was alive but stands the test of time, regardless of what style of yoga you practice. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned yogi––technique matters. There is no perfect pose, but by learning what works best for your body, you can create a yoga practice that will help you feel your best, inside and out.
We all have different anatomies, starting from our bones, our joints, our muscles, and our innate ability to move. You don’t have to be naturally flexible or strong to practice yoga. Taking the time to learn proper physical alignment and technique for each asana and then adapting them to your unique body will set you on the path to your own personal best practice. Flexibility and strength come with time!
“Action is movement with Intelligence. The world is filled with movement. What the world needs is conscious movement, more action.” B.K.S. Iyengar
Yoga emphasizes mindful breathing and certain styles, like Vinyasa yoga, link the breath to the movement to create a moving meditation. A good teacher will emphasize tuning inward and paying attention to how each pose feels. Listening to your body is key. If you’re experiencing mild discomfort, that’s probably just fine. But yoga should never cause any type of sharp or shooting pain. Conscious movement means moving with awareness and your awareness develops with time and commitment.
If you pay attention to technique in each pose, you’ll eventually move into the shape where you’re reaping the most benefits. Mastering the basics will free your mind to simply be present. You won’t have to think about it anymore, your body will learn all the small tweaks necessary to find the sense of “Sthira and Sukham” or “effort and ease as discussed in Patanjali’s yoga sutras.
Once you have a solid foundation, it’s simply a matter of layering your knowledge to move onto more advanced postures, like Scorpion and Headstand. Think of it like learning how to snorkel before you scuba dive or walk before you run. We’ve got tons of technique specific classes on YogaDownload, so you can safely and effectively learn just about any pose. Check out this week’s carefully curated collection!
Asana Lab: Warrior 2 - Katy Bateman
Yes! You can Crow! - Mary Baker
The Safe Path to Headstand - Shy Sayar
Qi Yoga Clinic - Hurdle - Dawnelle Arthur
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