Going Back to Basics
By Lauren Rudick • October 31st, 2012 • 3729 Views
My yoga practice has gotten supercharged. It all started just over a year ago on a vacation in Peru. I found myself at the top of a vista and asking my travel buddy to photograph me “in a cool yoga pose” for fun--okay it was for my Facebook page.
I started in crow but the angle wasn’t right and I felt the shot was showing a bit more of my gluteus extra maximus than I wanted to share with the general social media public. I decided to try something else. Without really knowing what was happening, I pulled in through my core, shifted my body sideways, extended one leg and magically found myself in a variation of side crow! I could barely believe it. I had never done this pose before, nor even attempted it. I had no clue that my body was capable of such strength and poise.
Since that moment, I have been gleefully indulging in inversions; Salamba Sarvangasana, Sirsasana, and Pincha Mayurasana to my heart’s content. Somewhere amidst the head-over-heels-ing though, I lost my regular practice of the more classical poses. Taking a class recently, I noted my body, mind and breath struggling to unite during a warrior series. Vrksasana was out of my new upside down comfort zone. This experience was extremely humbling. It seems that in excitedly and continually lifting my feet towards the sky, I lost my grounding.
I’ve decided to go back to basics. Returning to a more simple practice, back to the foundations of posture and alignment. This experience has reminded me that yoga is a path, a practice and like much in life, not wholly tangible when we’d like it to be. A sustained headstand is certainly not a measure of success if we sacrifice the ability to feel at ease in Tadasana. Yoga is about finding balance and I allowed the downside-up stimulating rush of endorphins to throw me off mine. So today, I jack up my practice with simplicity. I still work on arm balances and inversions because, quite frankly, I am addicted to them. But I cannot let the yang throw me away from the yin, so I do that too. Yin yoga, beginner hatha classes, gentle yoga and more.
By incorporating more basic asana into my life, I have found better balance not just in the...