By Stan Andrzejewski • February 20th, 2007 • 8513 Views
Conscious breathing is a major part of restorative yoga. Yogis believe that breath moves prana. Prana is the life force, described as Qi in Chinese medicine, Ki in Japanese medicine. Prana is the basics of the Indian medicine called Ayurveda. Prana is absolutely necessary for health and well being. Muscle tension, dysfunctional joints, and distracted restless minds interfere with the flow of prana. A basic tenet of eastern medicine is to facilitate the flow of energy to heal the body and mind. Skillful breathing effectively moves prana throughout the body. This is therapy in the East.
A series of balanced restorative poses for twenty, thirty, even sixty minutes is most effective. A quiet, clean, comfortable setting is necessary for one to focus on "letting go" and "opening up" images one needs to attend to throughout the session.
A relaxed inhale through the nose is an opening, not only of the rib cage and diaphragm but also an opening of the field of awareness to the spaces around us. During an inhale yogis will move prana from their centers outward through the body and beyond.
A skillful exhale through the nose releases not only the air, but the muscle tension as well. While exhaling in a restorative practice, the yogi settles into the poses, releases into gravity, letting go of the surface body of muscle and skin.
A common series of restorative poses might include:
• Viparita Karani
• Mountain Brook
• Supta Baddha Konasana
• Child's Pose
• Supported Upavista Konasana
• Reclining Twist with Bolster
Not Medical Care
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Stan Andrzejewski is the founder of Greater Baltimore Yoga & Monkton Village Yoga centers. He was certified in the Iyengar tradition in 1988 while a student of John Schumacher, but now considers Victor van Kooten as his inspiration. He integrates 32 years of experience as a physical therapist into his 20 years of teaching yoga. He works with people with orthopedic and neurological problems in his private practice. He has trained many yoga teachers through his apprenticeship program. Learn more about the classes, workshops, and teacher training at the Greater Baltimore Yoga Center & Monkton Village Yoga Center: www.marylandyoga.com