The day that I had been planning for in the last few months had finally arrived, Monday, November 2nd. The entire living room had been transformed into a photography studio! All the furniture moved about, the rug rolled up, the hardwood able to breathe again, two tall rods on tripods providing a cushion for several long, white, transparent, sheer drapes falling over and hugging the floors, creating the feel of a breathtaking studio for the day’s yoga photo shoot.
Theme of the Yoga Flow Series #3: Anticipating my yoga photo shoot in just a few hours, filled with possibilities and music, a swift space-inspired flow to warm up the body for upcoming long holds.
In the morning of the big day, I walked downstairs into a beautiful mess of a living room-turned-studio, which was now filled with natural light, then turned on some music, and it filled the air with anticipation of a day full of possibilities. I was humming to the music and praying for my hips to be open for holding the poses long. I was about to do a quick warm up session, and so magnificent was this soft backdrop we created in this living room, that I had no choice but to share it with you! May your days be filled with anticipation of things you dream of doing!
The purpose of the yoga series videos is to inspire myself and my readers to establish a devotion to our home practice, and to find meaning and lessons in each practice, be it 5 minutes or an hour. In each yoga video series, I will share an aspect of yoga practice, and search and surely find lessons that each session teaches me in the silence and stillness.
The 3 Lessons from Yoga Flow Series #3:
1. Alignment is key to avoiding injury:
I have yet to do a yoga practice where I don’t remind myself to slow down and align. Alignment is not my strongest suite. It is however, the strongest asset of an Iyengar yoga instructor. Every Anusara yoga class I have attended has focused on the alignment, and it is the only way to avoid injury. This means slowing down so we keep going. Slowing down to check before we enter a pose is crucial. I am especially reminded of this by watching myself slow in some places and pick up in others. Take your time and align first.
2. Create the best space to embrace yourself in yoga:
Soft drapes, bare hardwood, the tall clear vase with tall bamboo and rocks to support the roots. Absence of clutter and distractions. You cannot overestimate the importance of the right setting, gentle music and the gorgeous daylight filling the space. I had seriously underestimated the noise in the space, and it was not until I started the flow that I could feel the effect. Our minds seem to look for distractions, and removing them one by one can shift the energy inward where it belongs during the yoga flow.
3. Anticipation makes for a fabulous flow:
When you are planning a large project, the last few hours and minutes are filled with only anticipation, which often renders me less than productive. My mind is buzzing with the myriad of outcomes from what is to come, and it is nearly impossible to focus on anything in the last few hours. This flow allowed me discover yet another ideal situation for flowing with the breath. Anticipation creates energy and nervousness, and if we don’t use the energy well, it is wasted as worry! With yoga, you are able to flow, breathe, express the energy and move with it, dance with it if you want, and expend it beautifully. It calms your nerves, gets you ready for your event, and if you are lucky, even opens those hamstrings for deep folds.
Parting Inspiration: Calming down with yoga while revving up with anticipation, life is a balancing act, and preparation is key to your success as you make dreams come true.