” I’ll hold tight to what I know. You’re here and I’m never alone.” ~~ Barlow Girl
Think back to when you first started thinking about trying yoga. What was your first thought? If you’re anything like I was, my first thought was, “There’s no way I can do yoga…I am SO inflexible! People will laugh me right out of the room!”
But something intuitively told me that I needed to pursue the practice of yoga. That yoga was just what I needed. So I started out, like many people, by doing yoga to a video in the comfort of my own home. And eventually, I started attending a live class, because my intuition told me that I need someone to look at me and help me progress to the next level. And I’ve never looked back.
It has been wonderful being in a class with others, because as I look around the room, I always notice someone else who’s just as tight as me in a particular pose. Or I’ll notice someone who seems to have just as hard a time with the breathing and meditation piece of class as I do. It is refreshing to know that I am not the only one who has trouble! I know yoga is not about competition, but still. You know what I mean.
Lately, I have been trying to get better at the meditation and breathing exercises that are part of yoga. If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you know about the medical issues I am dealing with, and the stress from it all has finally caught up to me. And because my body is in so much pain, I need to really take an opportunity to morph my own yoga practice to be a bit more on the gentle side.
Last week, I attended a five day yoga Vinyasa Yoga certification. It was amazing, and I learned so much about the Vinyasa style of yoga that I didn’t know before. But the thing I enjoyed the most about the training is that we incorporated LOTS of breathing and meditation exercises into each and every day. Some of the breaths I knew, and some were new to me. And I realized very quickly that I REALLY need to focus on the more meditative aspect of yoga. I had a really hard time with the 4-Part Breath…this is when you breathe in for a particular count, hold the breath for that same count, breath out for that same count, hold for that same count…and then repeat. It was the last part that I had the most trouble with. I could do the first three parts, but that 4th part was unattainable for me…it was a struggle to even TRY to hold my breath after breathing out. I don’t know why, but it just was. So I realized then and there that this was the missing piece of my practice. Three times since then, I’ve practiced this breath…I found a really good guided meditation on iTunes and have been trying to perfect it, last night being the most recent. It still eludes me, that last part. Hmph!
I am determined to master this breath, as I already feel such benefits just from the first three parts alone. Imagine how much more relaxed I’ll be if I can just get that last part. 🙂
This week in class, we’ll be working on this breath. It’s a tough one, I won’t lie to you. Many people I’ve talked to say that it was tough for them, but they said that once they figured it out, it was amazing how they felt! So, if you’re in class with me this week and this breath eludes you as it has me and others, know that you are not alone. You’re never alone. We are on this journey together.