So sassy, I love it! You need this in your purse at all times. x
This is just a bit of fun for Moon Day that I came across on the Instagram of The Numinous.
I got: Mystic of Ancient Moons. How fancy do I feel now? Very!
(All credit to @the_numinous for the Moon Day fun)
What is your Moon Club name?
Do you have a ritual for Moon Day?
“perhaps just get more kind to yourself and those around you”
— apt words from my June horoscope
Once in a while I’ll stumble upon a horoscope, article, instagram and marvel at how perfectly these small happenings are timed to lessons and themes I am currently working on. For instance, the last few months have been really focused on the concept of kindness and softness. They’re NOT easy! It has taken so long for me to break down my need to never show softness and never backdown to really embrace how being soft can be a different kind of strength. Life isn’t just about how good a smackdown you can give or how feisty you can be. It’s terrifying and exhilarating to find that within all that being gentle, deep down there is a reservoir of true strength to withstand all outside forces as well as all the inner crazy. The best defence may be a good offence in sports but in life the best defence is inner strength.
Continuously working on the ability to stay perfectly gracefully still despite everything going on will build up your strength reserves mentally as well as physically. You’ll only get stronger this way and you’ll always feel centered, because your center is strong! Today’s drill is the perfect physical illustration of that wonderful kooky circular logic. You’re staying as still as you can, whilst working on strengthening your core and you won’t need to do a single crunch, hurray! It works for me and I hope it will for you too. Try it and let me know!
Enough chit-chat from me, let’s do this.
THE STAY STILL [
Working title I’m sticking with this – besides aren’t we over ‘labels’ already?]
Repeat this exercise 3 to 5 times, several times a week and you’ll definitely feel stronger physically and hopefully get closer to experiencing grace under pressure, even if it’s merely during the course of a yoga class. It will be worth it – eventually that grace will translate to beyond your physical class!
- Start in a kneeling position
- Place your hands either side of your knees
- Lean your weight into your hands and press strongly into the ground as you exhale
- Breathe your belly button in and up towards your spine
- On your next exhalation squeeze your knees towards your chest
- Hold as you breathe in and out for 5 rounds of breathing (something like the picture above)
- Inhale and squeeze your knees in a little more then
- Lower down on your next exhalation. (Finally!)
- Advance this by squeezing one heel off the floor and hold.
- Super advance this by squeezing both heels off the floor. You’re basically ready to levitate.
If it feels horrible for the front of your feet then you can start off kneeling with your toes tucked under. As you press up you will come high up onto your toes. When you’re stronger you can try again with your feet flat.
Your back will naturally round — go with that instinct.
Use your midsection to pull your knees into the curve of your body. Squeezing your inner thighs together will help activate your core just that extra more. As much of your weight is off the floor, not just dangling into the fronts of your feet.
Even though your back is rounded, don’t hunch your shoulders into your ears! And don’t scrunch your face! All the work is deep, deep down in your core. The rest of you is to resemble the surface of still water.
What it do?
I’m glad you asked. This will work your entire core as well as your ability to maintain your straight-arm strength. With your knees sucked in as close to your body as you can you’ll notice how hard your belly is working to keep that knees to chest connection going. The back gets a great stretch too.
Alternatives for wrist issues
Just do the same thing but laying on your back and imagine your pressing your hands into the ceiling and pushing it away. You’ll still get all the benefits and you’ll have a great time curling your body away from the floor. NOT EASY. You’ll know you’re doing it right because you’ll just know.
You can build up as you get stronger by doing the alternative in addition. Make the two versions part of your regular strength exercise.
Utthita = Extended
Tri = Three
Kona = Angle
Therefore: Extended Triangle Posture
This is one of the first postures I was taught; if I remember correctly it may even have come before Downward Facing Dog Posture.
It was a long time ago!
But I still get so many benefits every single time I practice it.
From standing, step the feet out to the sides and raise your arms parallel to the floor, at shoulderheight, palms facing the floor. Wriggle the right foot 90 degrees and turn the left foot inwards towards the right. Inhale keep extending the spine long and stretching your arms out to the sides. Maintain muscular activation of the legs. Exhale and lean to the right, taking the right hand down.
There are variations on where you place the front hand:
- If you practice Ashtanga, you work towards taking the front big toe.
- If you practice Iyengar, the front hand rests flat on the floor outside of the front foot.
- Or rest the hand on the shin.
- Do what you can.
Gaze upwards, or if that is uncomfortable simply look down.
Extend and lengthen everything!
Inhale, come up; exhale, switch sides.
Benefits (and my personal experience):
This pose strengthens the entire leg, develops the chest and improves posture. Mr Iyengar found it to help any respiratory conditions his students had and indeed it may very well have assisted in the reduction of my asthma. Or made me stronger. Any position which improves posture, strengthens the back and develops the chest seems to assist. The stamina you gain as you practice standing postures can help too. And of course learning to finally breathe through the nose rather than gasping for air helps.
Note: We are all wonderfully different so one person may have a totally different asthma experience to another. I just thought I would share my personal experience in case it is of use. The most important tool for me has been to learn to understand my body. Learn about your body, become aware of what conditions it thrives under and what conditions it does not. Find a teacher you can trust to guide you.
Take care and be well! x
If we wish to predict the future,
then we must create it.
It is that simple.
Life is very simple, it is just our habit to complicate things.
The truth is that we are powerful beyond measure.
We are the decider in our lives.
We can choose where to plant our feet and where our footsteps lead us.
Let’s start living in alignment with the life we dream of.
And then get read to watch our dreams come to life.