Thursday, 17 February 2011

Zoning In to Zone Out

Yoga has been a big part of my life, for the most part my daily life, for almost four years now. The majority of that time hasn't involved a class; just me, a yoga mp3 or video, and my yoga mat. I love the freedom of practising when I want, when I feel like it, and though I would love to attend a class once a week, I'm still in search of that class that does yoga the way I love to do yoga. For now I'm happy with a variety of mp3s and videos to guide me through - if nothing else, the freedom suits my current lifestyle absolutely.

My current lifestyle is seriously in need of a regular yoga practise!

Since I started working, my yoga capabilities have changed so vastly. Luckily, so have my needs, and yoga is no longer just a way to complement my running and build up my strength; it has become a way to unravel my body from the day, uncoil my sore back and stretch myself back to who I want to be. Even Child's Pose can be difficult on some days, as my hips and groins don't want to give in. Finally when they start to let go I feel as if I'm melting away from the busyness and the exhaustion, and what used to be the 'easier' poses are now the most challenging and the most rewarding. Balancing just isn't an option: I wobble and I stress out and I give in just like that.

Today, for the first time in six months, I managed some super balancing in my practise. Actually, I managed to balance better than I've ever balanced before, coming into a full, strong Side Plank and holding it for a good few seconds for the first time ever.

The reason for today's super sense of concentration? I reckon it was because, at the start of my practise, I was worrying about one specific problem. A problem that has been on my mind all day long. Right at the start, while in Child's Pose I held on to this problem, held it tight and then let it melt away as my hips melted down towards the mat. For the first time in a long time, if not ever, I actually let it all go. Before letting it go, I had to grasp it, hold on and acknowledge it, and once i had a strong hold of it, I was in control, and I was able to let it float away into the evening.

So, today for the first time, my idea of yoga has evolved into what I always wanted it to become. It can be a way of letting go, of becoming one moment and one posture. I'm excited to experiment some more with this; excited to see where it might take me, and where it might let me take myself.


  1. Hi Catherine
    I'm really interested in your comments about yoga...I have a yoga program on my wii fit and have been trying to do this...just wondering whether as a self-taught yoga - doer (?) do you think this is a way to go? I'm not sure about attending a class for many reasons, time and because I have a wii that was a present and was very exspensive I need to use it. What do you think? any advice or tips? love the blog x

  2. Hi Andrea, thanks for your comment!

    I'm not completely self-taught as I've attended a few different classes on and off, and I did take part in a yoga class every week for 6 months. Like you, I don't have a lot of time to commit to a regular yoga class either, which is why I now use mp3s and videos!

    I've never tried a Wii fit so I can't comment on how useful it will be for your yoga practise, but if you enjoy it and you find it's good exercise then you should stick at it! You could try a yoga class alongside it, just to get a feel of how yoga is taught, or you could have a go at an mp3/DVD.

    I can recommend and for some good videos for all levels, and for some great mp3s.

    Good luck! I'd love to know if you find anything that works for you!

  3. Careful....these are the kind of thoughts a person has just before starting yoga teacher training!

    And Andrea I would say the Wii yoga is pretty good. why not do a short beginners course, 5 or 6 weeks with a real teacher to make sure you're getting the basics + then go with the Wii :)