Inside Yoga 212 (9/10/2017)
Every journey starts with its first step: we might nod our heads at these words of wisdom but how often do we remember to use them, especially when it comes to our yoga practice? Probably not very often, so here’s a reminder.
It doesn’t take long to pay attention to what our feet are doing, but we can be complacent, after all, we’ve being using them for so many years. Yet this is a bad habit that yoga practice asks us to stop and solve by being attentive to what and how we use our feet (and the rest of our body).
When practising a standing asana (posture) we first carefully place our feet on the mat – perhaps one at a time or together, either way, we are advised to place the foot carefully down on the mat, as if we were laying a carpet or rug a flat as possible on the floor. Unfolding our foot to the floor, making sure the sole of the foot has a good contact, and an evenly balance contact with the floor; and importantly using our toes as well, by spreading them while placing them on the floor, to grip the mat (not aggressively but firmly).
This will just take a few seconds or two, but however often you have done this practice, it pays to take your time, and be mindful of your actions.
Then we can pay attention to the rest of the posture, setting ourselves up to hold a position with awareness and steadiness. This is, of course, important in the standing positions but the attention to feet is also required when in other postures like to seated forward bend because in this position if our feet are flopping over to the side, the whole position is less effective.
This is a simple and short message to be aware of our feet and use them effectively and as well as we can, and it doesn’t matter how often we use them, this is for every time.
The next time you are standing, give some attention to how you are standing?
Start as you mean to go on… feet first.
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