Emma Lovell Yoga

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Circles

Images from here

Inspiration for this week’s class theme comes from this article on the ‘feminine’ in yoga:

‘… mainstream yoga schools neglect the ability and necessity to swiftly soften and engage muscles in a coordinated way to produce a circular, waving fluid movement to create flexible power. To undertake such movements, the body must be allowed to be receptive in order to transmit the force sequentially, with a firm base to steady the root of the watery movement. The student must flit between rigidity and receptivity to produce the wave, with too much of one element ruining the effect; whilst a mirror can sometimes help to see the effect, intuition and feeling tells the student where he is stuck or too loose. The highly subtle, relational quality between the masculine and feminine through the spine is microcosmic reflection of this constant interplay at the macrocosmic level.’

Whilst I’m not 100% in agreement with simplistically assigning things (or movements) masculine and feminine qualities, this is a great article on both the more masculine roots of modern yoga and on creating balance in our practice between the linear and the circular, between rigidity and waves.

Here’s a nice fluid sequence to try at home:




Self-love

felixinclusis:<br /><br />
“ webecomelegend: Love Matt van Leeuwen<br /><br />
”

There is uncertainty in the air and times are strange and volatile.  It’s time we spread some love and kindness, starting with ourselves.  Take some time out of your day for a bit of self-care; listen to your favourite song from start to finish whilst doing nothing, get outside, eat Nutella from the jar, take a warm bath.  I love this self-care list posted by Rachel Johnston and taken from Key Ballah’s ‘Preparing My Daughter For Rain’:

I’ve also been working my way through these bite-sized downloads from one of the teachers I trained with, Anna Ashby:

Rescue Remedies with Anna Ashby: four practices to help with life’s day to day stresses

Here’s a self-love restorative yoga sequence for you to try at home:

 

1. Begin in easeful rest pose with the knees touching and the feet a bit wider than hip width.

2. Take the knees apart to hip width and with the feet hip width apart roll the knees to the right, pause, and then roll the knees to the other side.  Repeat.

 

 

3. Supported child’s pose with a weight on the back of the pelvis.  Aim for the head and pelvis to be the same height.

 

 

 

 

4. Supta baddha konasana- support under the thigh bones, head and upper back.  You can use bolsters for this or lots of blankets.

 

 

 

5. Legs on chair/edge of the bed with blanket or bolster under hips and a blanket supporting your head and neck.  Make sure your knees come right to the edge of the chair.  You may also want to add an eye bag to the forehead.

 

Savasana with a Bolster Under the Knees for Low Back Pain Relief

 

6. Savasana for at least 10 minutes!  A bolster/sleepbag or rolled blanket can be really nice under the knees.

 

 

(Images from google)




My bones are mountains.
My tears, rushing rivers.
The earth’s crust is my skin.
Trees adorn my head.
The sun, moon, and stars
Are in my eyes.
The ether of the Universe is my breath.
Separateness is an illusion.
I am all things and all things are me.

Anya Phenix




Book recommendation

This book is beautifully written and a fascinating read.  One of the reviewers puts it best: ‘The Faraway Nearby is a masterpiece, about nothing less than the story (the myth, the fairy tale) we are living, about how we can step out of that story to become who we are, who we are meant to be.  This book is a gift- it will make your life larger.’ Nick Flynn

I love this quote from the book:

‘The leprosy specialist Paul Brand wrote, “Pain, along with its cousin touch, is distributed universally on the body, providing a sort of boundary of self”, but empathy, solidarity, allegiance- the nerves that run out into the world- expand the self beyond its physical bounds.’