Yoga and Walking with Awareness
It struck me then how much this year of weekly yoga classes has seeped into my daily life. Walking is not just walking anymore.
I was aware of which muscles were activated by each step, where I carried my weight and how this changed whether we were trekking up the insanely steep Dispea Steps, or descending down a narrow dirt path.
I was conscious of my breathing, measuring it with our pace, taking “deep inhalations and fully exhaling” as our teacher has taught us.
Walking is so routine, it is rare we’d ever think of what it actually involves! But yoga allows us this comprehension of our own bodies: sitting cross-legged in Sukhasana at the beginning of class, we are asked to bring awareness to any tension in our bodies, to bring the breath there, to breath into it. Holding Tadasana, we are not just “standing” but bringing attention to any unevenness in the balance of our feet or stiffening in the backs of our knees.
Inviting this awareness can make even just a stroll around the ‘hood have the same grounding affect as an hour of yoga. We don’t always have the time or energy to go through a full series of Sun Salutations, but we can take what we’ve learned from that to our daily lives.
Cielle Taaffe (filling in for Tiffanie this week)
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Ed: Kate Bartolotta