Meditation Title: Yoga – Mindfulness
Technique: Yoga – Meditation – they’re different things, right? Yes and no. Think of yoga as one of many forms of MOVING meditation (like walking or tai chi) whereas when most people think of meditation they think of stationary meditation. During moving meditation, you can still have the same acute focus as you do when you are sitting still. That’s the whole point of this month of meditation — increasing your focus. Being in the moment. Not just when you’re sitting still, but also while moving. So, today’s flow sequence is a comprised of the poses that I find bring ME the most mindfulness. You may find a different set of poses does that for you. Therefore, you should do the poses the work best for you.
As a note here: Yoga is not just for skinny, flexible people. I know a lot of heavier people who are very flexible and strong, too. I also know some seniors who do yoga. Don’t allow your body type or age dissuade you from trying this. Just go slow and only do what your body allows you to do. So you can’t do a full standing forward bend? Go as far as you’re comfortable with. Don’t hurt yourself. Yoga is NOT a competition. (Before starting any exercise program — seek advice of a physician. Especially if you are significantly overweight, or have significant mobility issues or health problems.)
My Meditation : Tree pose, bring hands over head, standing back bend, swoop down into standing forward bend. Relax into the stretch. Repeat 5 times. Triangle pose, each side, hold pose 30 seconds each. Alternate with standing forward bend as a resting pose. Down to knees for camel pose. Cat pose to Cobra (5 times), Full locust to Bow (20 second hold), Move to seated position. Focus on the breath for one two minutes. Head to knee, relax into it, each side. Butterfly, deepen the stretch and breathe. Spine twist to the left, breathe and stretch. Same to the right. Half lotus, 5 minutes meditation. (If you can do full lotus, go for it. That tends to hurt my knees. Still working my way toward that.) All the while, focus on the breath and the body, and nothing else.
Meditation Resources: If you are new to yoga – you can always use the old standby, the staple of beginner yoga practice: Sun Salutations Here’s a short, quick sequence that can be done by just about anyone.
Thoughts: I did my usual 45 minutes, incorporating the sequence above. It feels good to focus on my body and nothing else. It’s a great reminder that staying in motion is important, and that it’s good to take time for self-care. In today’s busy world, pausing to take care of ourselves is often an afterthought.
Make it a priority.