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For the next two weeks we’re going to work on actions to align a healthy spine, particularly low back. In yoga we look at our alignment from the ground on up so the alignment of the feet, knees and thighs has a lot to do with how healthy and well aligned our spine is. ASK: What do you think of as promoting health in the spine?

(…Has freedom, stability, moves with the breath, flexibility.)

I think of health coming from balance- not one extreme or the other, the balanced place in the middle. And so today we’re going to focus on finding a health in the spine through a balance of stability and freedom ( <3 Q). This relates to our lives also, when we have a sense of security, groundedness or our mind isn’t so totally scattered and stressed we have more freedom to be creative, flexible, and expressive. If you don’t have that stability you’re just focused on having those basic needs fulfilled and you’re under a lot mental/emotional stress and thus you can’t devote energy to more creative, expansive pursuits. So our yoga practice is also about coming into a place of balance in all parts of ourselves so that we can expand into our full potential as manifestations of beautiful, divine consciousness.

SITO

-       Warm ups, include hands to shins, thighs back and apart. SN x2, side stretch…

  • Emph on stability in legs and freedom of breath. Balanced, clear mind.

-       Low back Lab: investigation- feet parallel vs turned out feeling study. + SITO w/ block and strap

-       Utkatasana w/ hands on knees

-       Lunge- hand on front outer shin > twisted lunge

-       Prayer-twisted utkatasana > twisted lunge

-       Dog pose- feet wide, knees, shins in and big inner spiral

Recreate CURVE FIRST THEN LENGTHEN

-       Prasarita (jump feet out)

-       Parsvo

-       Triko – hand down to inside edge (shin hug in and then take thighs way back)

-       Triko- hand to outside edge shins in then scoop TB, elongate spine.

-       pigeon – emph back shin

-       Upavistha with a friend (feet to inside of shins)

  • Blanket under hips if you can’t sit with legs straight and low back in

-       Janushirasana

-       Ardha Matsyendrasana

Mary Oliver Poem- Bless the fingers, for they are as darting as fire. Bless the little hairs of the body, for they are softer than grass. Bless the hips for they are cunning beyond all other machinery. Bless the mouth for it is the describer. Bless the tongue for it is the maker of words. Bless the eyes, for they are the gifts of the angels, for they tell the truth. Bless the shoulders for they are a strength and a shelter. Bless the thumb for when working it has godly grip. Bless the feet for their knuckles and their modesty. Bless the spine for it is the whole story. -Mary Oliver

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