October was particularly challenging as we focused on arm balances, practicing bakasana. As I gain more strength, I feel more comfortable with basic arm balances, particularly those often used in vinyasa. I still have a long way to go as I need to further open my hips, and strengthen my core and arms to be able to hold crow for longer periods; but I must say that the journey so far has been encouraging. Together with hamstring opening in September, these past two months have been very fruitful.
This month of November, instead of featuring one pose, I decided to focus on a theme. If the month of October was all about gaining confidence, this month, we will focus on freeing ourselves of stored emotions. Backbends. Let’s release our inner energy. Personally, this will be a difficult journey for me as I don’t particularly like doing backbends. But the waves of sensation after a backbend, ah…those I like. There are many benefits to backbends; these are really good for the health of our backs. Backbends are not all about the back, however. In addition to strengthening the lower back muscles, backbends open the hips (I need that!) and stretch the legs. Backbends also increase the flow of blood and loosen the joints. In backbends, you need to open your heart/chest, shoulders, and hips. These poses build courage and stamina and gives us energy. I don’t do deep backbends often. I usually dread them. This month, I will focus on opening up and releasing hidden fears within me. I need to energize myself and in the process release all negative emotions and stress from my body. Namaste.
Photo credits: Jenny, Lyka and Brit