Creative Connections

Humpback Rocks
Humpback Rocks, Blue Ridge Mountains, Virginia. Reminding me of tadasana (mountain pose). Sturdy, strong and solid.

Last Monday I began a new session “Creative Connections” (the art and yoga after school program).  It was a great practice because we were able to be outside underneath the beautiful blue September sky.  In my opinion, nothing beats practicing yoga outside.  You get to hear different sounds, feel the gentle breeze, and enjoy the welcoming sun.  It’s a different kind of experience to practice outside, not only because of the natural elements, but also because we spend a lot of time indoors.  Everyday, most of us spend a good amount of time inside.  We move from room to room, pass through long hallways, all without making any contact with the world that is outside our windows and doors.  We may forget that sometimes being outside is a way we can connect with something larger than ourselves.

It was the first session of the 8-week program and the theme was “Foundation”.  Together we explored how breath is the foundation of yoga.  We talked about the symbolism of the word and discussed how having a strong foundation gives a basis to build from as the weeks progress, not only in yoga, but maybe within ourselves.

Below is the yoga sequence we moved through this week.  The practice was built around tadasana (mountain pose) and experiencing mountain pose as the action point in different poses throughout the practice.

Foundation Yoga Practice:

Focus Pose:  Tadasana, Mountain Pose

  •  Basis of all standing poses
  • Engaging large muscle groups
  • A starting point to connect to other poses in a practice
  • Increases concentration and provides focus

Benefits:

  •  Good for posture
  • Increase awareness
  • Steadiness
  • Balance
  • Aims of tadasana translate throughout the entire yoga practice

Tadasana
Standing Arm stretches
½ sun salute (forward folds)
Sun Salutation A
Sun Sun Salutaion B (warrior 1 only)
Chair pose (holding)
Knee bend/balance – arms out front to ground
Table pose balance series
Locust pose series
Bhanda konasana
Seated twists
Alternate leg stretches on back
Savasana

Students culminated their practice with a short practice in art.  The art was to reflect their response about their first yoga practice.

Mountains
Students often report an overall feeling of calmness after a yoga practice, maybe like the softer appearance of these mountains in the south of France.

 

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