Improving you body awareness by focusing on Pl…

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We can use a very simple mini routine, of Puppy & Cat poses, (explored in a recent post) to increase your body awareness, especially of your center line and balancing your body along it.  

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In yoga, we move our bodies along precise ‘planes’ or
directions.   Most people slip out of their Plane of Movement when they are going past their
limit with the stretch or when they are releasing a pose.  This is when
most yoga injuries occur.  

Also, if your
balance is poor, it’s very likely that you’re not maintaining your posture and
movement along these planes. For example, if you slouch, your holding yourself
too much into the “Front-Red” zone in the above picture.  

Moving more precisely in your planes of movement will be safer and give you more body awareness. 

Today, while you practice the Puppy-Cat combination:

  • First practice a few rounds of the basics movements to get used to
        them again.
  • Next, practice when to breathe in and when to breathe out while you do several rounds of the sequence.
  • Then practice several rounds, paying attention to your Planes of Movement
         

In
Puppy Pose

  • Keep your weight even on your hands and knees.
  • Imagine that center line along the floor that runs exactly in line with the center of your body; the line that divides the space in the floor beneath you exactly in half, left and right.
  • Sink the middle of your chest down toward that center line.
  • As you draw your hips up and back, keep your chest moving along that center line.

In
Cat Pose

  • Keep imagining the center line along the floor.
  • As you sweep your body forward, move your chest along the center line.
  • As you push your body up, keep your weight even on your hands and knees, pushing into the floor with your hands as you arch your back toward the ceiling.

This can take a bit of practice, but
it’s very worthwhile.  As you become used
to moving in this way, it will help your sequence flow.

Namaste,
Corinne

Cat Pose:  http://tinyurl.com/zc23cyj
Puppy Pose:  http://tinyurl.com/j7n43d8


My yoga books and charts are available by
clicking these links to
Amazon.comAmazon.ca,
and on
Kindle,
worldwide.
You’ll find my MP3’s on
CDBaby.com,
with a search for “Corinne Friesen”.
Click here for some of my material on
Kobo.
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Complementary Pose Pairs that Use Puppy Pose

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A well rounded yoga routine
is made of complementary pairs.  Each
pair contains a “main pose” and a “compensating pose”.

The Main Pose is included according to your purpose for your
routine.  It’s generally held for several
breaths, until you have coaxed your fullest extension from the pose.  Or you use your Breathing Theme on that pose.

The Compensating Pose stretches you in the opposite direction, but only
briefly.  If the complementary pose is
held at all, it generally for just a breath.
It’s included to realign  your
body after the main pose.  It’s also
there to provide a counter stretch, of the opposite, supporting muscles.  Muscles tend to be in pairs, on opposite
sides of a bone.  While one stretches,
the other contracts.  If you only stretch
or strengthen one side of the pair and not the other, you will not get the full
benefits of your efforts.  A muscle on
one side can only stretch as much as the oppose muscle is willing to contract,
and vice versa.   So you need to include
both of the muscle partners in your routine.

Together, a Main pose and its
Compensating Pose make nice mini-routines, or quick Yoga Snacks.

One of the main Compensating
Poses is Puppy Pose.  It’s excellent after seated
back bends and poses done lying face down. Here are some
combinations that use Puppy pose:

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The PDF of this article is here:  http://tinyurl.com/y53ywoox

Namaste,
Corinne

My yoga books and charts are available by
clicking these links to
Amazon.comAmazon.ca,
and on
Kindle,
worldwide.
You’ll find my MP3’s on
CDBaby.com,
with a search for “Corinne Friesen”.
Click here for some of my material on
Kobo.
Here’s my shop on
Etsy.
You might also like my personalized yoga items on
Zazzle

It’s Not the Pose.  It’s How You Work It.  And…

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Students often come to me
concerned that they might not be able to get particular benefits from yoga if
they can’t do certain poses.  Not to
worry.  You can gain the same benefits
working simpler (or alternative) poses.
It’s just a matter of how you approach them.  The key is in how you apply your
breathing.  As part of that, your breath
will guide you into working to your
limit, and that’s where a lot of the benefits are coming from, not from working
a tough pose.

So, ironically, as a
teacher, I have to go to greater extremes to get to the same benefit as you can
with simpler poses and less contortion!

So, here are some tips:

Chose
poses that suit your level of ability.
If the pose you’re aiming for is
too extreme for you, you can get the same muscle workout from simpler
poses.  Here’s my list of substitute
poses:  http://tinyurl.com/hyz9ttm

Then let your
breathing take you deeply into the pose, rather than force the pose.
Breathing strategies that help you do this
include:

Here are tips on poses and breathing strategies
depending on specific results you might be looking for.  
What
you do use the listed breathing method while you’re in your chosen
pose(s).  (This is not a complete list,
but it includes my favourites for the purposes.)

Flexibility or Light Tension Relief
Ideally use these breathing
strategies with movement oriented poses.
Also be sure to use complementary pairs of poses, for best results.  (Here is my list of complementary pairs:  http://tinyurl.com/zxjvnrn  )
Then, for the breathing, use one of these:

Deep Stretching:  Use the poses that address the
muscles you want to develop, with this breathing method:  http://tinyurl.com/hbp8xhv

Strength:  Use the poses that address the muscles you
want to develop, with this breathing method:
http://tinyurl.com/jbaalzs

Energy:  Use Extending
the Breath
:  http://tinyurl.com/jbaalzs
This works best with
movement oriented poses.

Calm:  Chose forward bends or poses that fold you in on
yourself.  Then, when you’re in your
pose(s) use one of these breathing strategies:

Present Mindedness:
Using any pose you like,
apply this breathing strategy when you’re in the pose:  The
Sponge
: http://tinyurl.com/jbaalzs

Namaste,
Corinne

My yoga books and charts are
available by clicking these links to
Amazon.comAmazon.ca, and on Kindle, worldwide.
You’ll find my MP3’s on
CDBaby.com, with a search for “Corinne
Friesen”.
Click here for some of my material on
Kobo.
Here’s my shop on
Etsy.
You might also like my personalized yoga items on
Zazzle

Poses that Go Well with The Sponge Visualizati…

The Sponge will help you relax muscles that you are using
during a yoga stretch.  This exercise
seems leisurely while you’re doing it, but many people find that it is also a
very deep work out.  It works your
muscles to their limit, so  it’s a great
muscle builder.  It does this seemingly
without effort, while releasing tension out of your body very quickly.  

Here’s a link to a guided MP3 on doing the Sponge: https://tinyurl.com/zoxmho2

The following are poses that go well with this visualization.  You can find free instructions to many of these poses on my website:  AudioYoga.com

Namaste,
Corinne

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My yoga books and charts are available by
clicking these links to
Amazon.comAmazon.ca,
and on
Kindle,
worldwide.
You’ll find my MP3’s on
CDBaby.com,
with a search for “Corinne Friesen”.
Click here for some of my material on
Kobo.
Here’s my shop on
Etsy.
You might also like my personalized yoga items on
Zazzle

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