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'Pose of the Week' & Spring class updates

I've been thinking about more regular emails to you, my wonderful students. A reason to connect with you on a more regular basis. I've also been thinking about expanding my teaching offering beyond the studio and the village hall classes that I run. The first place I could do this to connect to a wider audience is online. Classes of various lengths that I will pre-record and that you can dip in and out of at your own time, online. Maybe it will bolster your practice or make your practise easier at home when you can't get to my studio at a certain time. There are some benefits in having this asset although the pandemic taught us that there is nothing like face to face human connection and this feels more intense when it comes to practising yoga. We are united in the same room and space with a common interest. I can see you properly and you can see me and I can adjust your poses if need be. I will keep thinking about how I might expand beyond the studio. But any feedback is welcome on this topic.




In the meantime I plan to send you a 'pose of the week' email. I will focus on one pose that might be really simple or complex. I'll give some history and context and break it down for you with some cues for where you need to be to hold the pose. This means you can refocus your attention on the pose or you may learn something in the reading that makes you think about it differently - how you interpret the pose, how you hold it, how you might do it differently next time it crops up in class.


It may be a pose that you are not familiar with, or you've never even seen let alone practised. You might love it or find it really challenging. Either which way, you will be revisiting the pose or learning something totally new. And we feel alive when we keep learning. The yogi's do say that we should practice the asanas that we find challenging - not just defaulting to the ones we enjoy and find easy. I might need some help with the drawings to illustrate the pose - drawing is not my forte. I'm still haunted by my art teacher's face when she came over to inspect my 'still life' onion that I had attempted in Year 7. I am still also haunted by how unlike an onion it looked. So if you or anyone you know is a dab hand at simple line drawing then please do let me know, I would love to hear from you. In the meantime I will most likely use some kind of stock imagery to highlight the pose so lacking is my illustration talent.


In other news, I will be hosting a special edition Easter class at 11am on Good Friday which falls on Friday 29th March. After class we will enjoy some tea and a special home made Easter treat..yummy. Spaces are limited so book now to reserve your space. As of this week and moving forward I will hold two classes each Friday - 9.30am and 11am. So for those of you who like a slower pace in the morning feel free to come to the later class.

Also extra class news if there is enough demand is a potential new class on Thursday

lunchtime at 12.30pm.


POSE OF THE WEEK


PLANK POSE in Sanskrit 'Phalakasana'



History

In Plank Pose the body looks like a plank - thin and long. Its also called Kumbhakasana or Dandasana. In Sanskrit, kumbhaka means breath retention, and asana means pose. In the traditional practice, before lowering into the low push-up position, the practitioner would briefly hold their breath.


Step by Step

  • Ground all of your palms down into the floor - focus on the finger bases and ground down into the Earth. Middle finger is pointing forward to the top of the mat.

  • Make sure your shoulders are stacked over your wrists.

  • Firm your upper arms in towards each other

  • Draw the lower belly in and up. Engage your mula bandha. The energy lock that is located in the zone of your pelvic floor.

  • Extend both legs back with your toes tucked so you are in a high push-up position. Your body is in a long straight line from head to heels.

  • Slide your shoulder blades down along the spine, firm them into the back and press the space between the shoulder blades up towards the ceiling.

  • Engage your thigh muscles and have the sense that you are drawing the legs together (without moving them). Have the sense you are lifting the knee caps.This creates more core strength and stability.

  • Imagine you want to lengthen the tailbone towards your heels.

  • Keep pushing the floor away evenly with the palms of the hands and imagine you’re pressing the heels back.

  • Chest and rib cage are broad and active.

  • Hips are square, strong and slightly lifted.

  • Look at the floor slightly gazing forward, jaw relaxed. Breath is even and steady.

  • You can stay in this pose anywhere between 5 breaths to a couple of minutes.

  • To come out of the pose, push yourself back into a three legged dog, a downward facing dog or lower the knees to the floor and rest in child’s pose.

Modifications Option to come onto forearms and hold plank here for a variation.

If you have sore wrists, roll up a small towel and place it under the heel of your hands to reduce the angle of the wrist bend.

Spring Class schedule as follows:

Monday - 12.30pm Castle Camps Village Hall

Tuesday 9.30am - WAH Yoga studio

Thursday 9.30am and/or 12.30pm - WAH Yoga studio

Friday 9.30am and 11am - WAH Yoga studio




Special Easter practice on Friday 29th March 11am at the Wild at Heart Yoga Studio.






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