There is no competition in Yoga!

There is no competition in yoga. For me it has become about finding what works for my body and mind on a given day.

It’s ever changing, as is my body, mood and a host of other variables. I use to go to classes and feel bad if there were poses I could not do or if I could do a pose but on that day, my body was achy or not feeling it.  Why would I feel bad for taking care of myself? I think it has something to do with a competitive nature I have (and I know I ‘m not the only one). The older I get, the more I say I don’t give a shit what anyone else is doing or if the teacher suggests something I know is not going to feel good in my body. I listen to what I know is right for me on that day. I don’t want to compete with anyone else or myself. I want to be in a space that is non-judgmental, filled with compassion and kindness and no competition.

If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, ask yourself these questions? How well did you sleep last night, do you have an injury that is healing, getting over feeling sick, did not eat enough, just had a fight with your boss, friend, or someone, do you always have tight hamstrings no matter what, do you have an area in your body that can never bend a certain way, do you not have the upper body strength for something? The list of variable can go on and on, but I will stop there and hope you get the picture. Based on all these variables and my bodies ability on any given day is my guide for what I will or will not do.

Find what’s right for you, whatever that means.

Yoga for everyone

I recently was reading an article and saw the below description about the author and thought, that’s me! Not word for word, but me none the less.

I am a Bad Yogi. Actually, I am the worst yogi. I am the carnivorous, red wine- and French cheese-loving type, and in my classes you won’t hear much Sanskrit or anything about the Sutras. I make more jokes than I make references to any self-help philosophy, and to top it all off, I don’t believe there’s anything wrong with that. Truthfully though, teaching yoga has been one of my greatest pleasures; I practice to feed my teaching, but I teach to feed my life.

I use to think I needed to drink the kool aid or I was not legit and now I think bullshit. I am a really good teacher and study my butt off to keep learning and growing.

I would add that my yoga practice and teaching came out of a deep desire to live in a pain free body. It was then and is still is one of my deepest motivations.

 

stepping out

feet

The Feet..

The feet, the feet, the feet..

Have I mentioned the feet and how foundational they are.

Have I mentioned that I take my feet for granted way to much. (my hands too, but that’s another rant)

Have I mentioned that they need some of my time like every other body part.

Stop for just a moment, stand up and think what your feet do for you, day in and day out. Think about if your standing on the outer edges of your feet or maybe the inner edges? Not sure what I mean, look at the bottom of your shoes and see how its worn down. This might help you understand your pattern of walking. Try to take a few minutes everyday and walk more symmetrically this will probably be uncomfortable at first, but worth the effort. I saw something once that said imagine shorter skis on your feet and walk.. It would probably force our feet to walk very straight and you would think about every step, hmmm

Take a minute and notice if your feet are pointing straight forward when you walk. Do you turn out or pigeon toe in?

If your not sure what I mean by “feet are our foundation”? Think about a building on the ground, or a can or jar you place on the counter, what would happen if the bottom of any of these surfaces were uneven?

I also walk around bare foot. In class this year we spent weeks going over the feet and I asked about walking bare foot and its benefits and there are many. To many to discuss here, I will say there are many bones, ligaments, muscles, and fascia in the feet and the only way to really exercise all the parts is walking bare foot and doing exercise for your feet. Shoes constrict our feet in different ways, not allowing for full movement of the feet.

Take a minute or 2 everyday to consciously walk barefoot.  I use these small balls, under my feet and roll them around underneath the entire bottoms of my feet. Of course there are also some stretches and different movements you can do for your feet as well. I find these 2 things generally help tremendously in keeping my feet exercised and free of any achy feelings.

Happy Feet!

Suzi