Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Day 60 - Body part surya namaskar

I got this text from Miranda (my neighbour) yesterday: "Anthea and I have a 108 proposal for you!"

(I love this. These two amazing women continue to have crazy and interesting ideas on how to vary the 108 practice!)

Their idea: We focus on specific body part for each set of 12 sun sals. For instance, we do 12 basic surya namaskar A, while concentrating our attention on, say, the knees and then, the hips, etc. Sounded like a cool concept, so we agreed to try it this morning.

We also agreed that we would, as a juxtaposition to yesterday's talkative practice, do our sun salutations in silence, so we wrote out a list to avoid the need for discussion. Here's our list:
  1. Feet & ankles
  2. Quads & knees
  3. Pelvis, moola bandha + vagina ;)
  4. Inner leg line/ spine
  5. Rib cage & uddiyana bandh
  6. Wrist & hands
  7. Shoulder girdle
  8. Neck & jalandhara bandha
  9. Mouth, jaw & eyes
It was a really intricate and meditative experience. I felt that certain body parts we easy to connect with and others more difficult. My feet and hands were the easiest, probably because I'm used to doing that, but I had some pretty cool revelations in the process nonetheless. I discovered that, despite knowing better, I still lift the knuckle of my index finger in downward dog and so there is more pressure on my outer wrist and pinky finger, which for sure is related to my wrist and shoulder tensions. I also noticed that when I transition from forward bend to chaturanga, I most often step back with my left foot, unless I jump, of course. And when I step forwards from downward dog to the top of my mat, I use my right foot. Curious...

I had a harder time connecting with my pelvis and rib cage. I felt that there was too much focus on all at once and that 12 sun sals wasn't enough time to address each aspect of the area. Miranda and Anthea agreed stating the pelvis is "dense" and that there's a lot to it.

Next time we do this practice, I'll focus on less body parts. I think need more time to explore, because once I started observing a certain part of the body, so much information is revealed and I went deeper into the experience. This reminds me of practice my teacher Hart gave us to do for homework about five years ago. He suggested we place our hand on the floor for five minutes and just watch what happens. I'll admit I wasn't really into the idea back then, because I couldn't focus, but I think I'll give it a try now.

You can try this practice in any context. Let me know what you come up with!

Miranda's post-practice comment: "I feel so aware of my whole body right now. It's so cool!"

1 comment:

  1. Mmmm, I like sound of that. I must try it out. Thanks!