Friday, January 25, 2008

“Your Edge”

What is your edge in a pose? You know, the place where you feel you cannot go more deeply into the pose? It feels like a wall, doesn’t it? Like you couldn’t possibly go further. Did you know there is no such thing as a “wall” in stretching? We are working with soft tissue here, it can always lengthen. Now, it is true you reach a place in which you can’t go further, for now, but that place is always moving. If you were to hold the spot for a moment longer, breathe into it, see it release, you would then find the “wall” moves. I have begun calling it a “speed bump” instead of a wall because although it may slow us down, it certainly doesn’t need to stop us. The key to transforming your wall to merely a speed bump is to keep your mind in the pose, feel the resistance, breathe into it, see it moving. What often happens, though, is we go into a pose the same way every time. We go to our same place, rest for a moment (often thinking about something else), then we pop out and do the next pose. Of course, this isn’t true with all of our poses. I find it most prevalent in poses you don’t enjoy or ones that you do so frequently you have developed a strong habitual pattern in it. I encourage you to enter poses anew each time.

Think of how many places in your life, off the mat, in which you do the same thing. You assume it will be the same each time, whatever it is. Your job will be just as stressful today as yesterday, your commute will be just as challenging, you will always make the same amount of money, your parents will always be controlling, your children will always be hard to handle in a restaurant. You get the idea. This concept shows up everywhere.

Instead of assuming the same position each time, assume it will be different. Let yourself open to the possibilities. Let your body open to the poses and your mind to your life. Let your life be unforgettable.

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