The benefits of yoga postures derive not at the level of form...


From the beginning the physical poses of yoga have been defined in relatively precise forms and by adhering to these we believe we will 'master' the physical form of yoga.

What has been forgotten/lost in some teachings is that it was also understood in the beginning that application of the process and precise instructions was to be based on 'each individuals actual condition'. I understand this to take into consideration such things as, a persons muscular-skeletal system, (proportion, orientation, bone to bone compression and muscular/ fascia tension) what may be narrowly understood as strength and flexibility.

These are hugely important concepts to understand if we practice yoga...

Why?

Well because a popular misconception about yoga is the idea that the value of each posture lies in achieving its precise form. Sorry. It is not. In fact if you strive to meet all the external standards of a pose and blindly follow precise instructions (ignore your individuality...). If you lose yourself in the somewhat superficial details of positioning and alignment then the deeper, more profound benefits, the transformative qualities of the posture (for body and mind) are lost and you may inadvertently reinforce dysfunctional holding patterns and habits (of body and mind).

"The actual benefits to be achieved from yoga postures derive not at the level of form at all, but at the level of function". This means understanding the purpose of each pose you practice and adapting the posture to suit you as an individual.

So today I invite you to consider the practice of each posture as a self study in your individual 'movement potential' and not in the attainment of picture perfect poses.

Thoughts and quote inspired from writings by Gary Kraftsow and Paul Grilley


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