Life balance

TIPPING POINTS
Keeping everything balanced in life can be quite the balancing act, pardon the pun. Life is like a seesaw with lots of ups and downs. There is always going to be degrees of tipping one way or the other and we have to consciously work on bringing it back to level. When you find you have slipped down to one end of the seesaw it can be quite challenging to get back to the fulcrum point. Which, after a busy period in September where I lost sight of balance, is where I find myself at the moment looking up the incline of the slide!

FINDING BALANCE IN YOUR PRACTICE
When the world around me is spinning I find comfort in simple, familiar poses during my practice – poses that I know feel safe, secure, and even conjure up a bit of inner strength to help me feel strong again. This sequence includes lots of twists to balance out the nervous system and hormone levels; some standing balances to find physical balance and carve out a groove for mental balance; and core activation to stabilise the whole body. Most of us hold more tension in one side of the body than the other. As you run through the sequence look for symmetry left and right. Actively soften both shoulders in poses where the arms are arised. Look for equal press down and effort in both legs for the standing poses.

ALIGNMENT CUES
Through this sequence look for signals as to how the poses make you feel and what you need from your time on the mat. Tune into your practice and let it support you physically and mentally:

  • Before you start you Marjaryasana/Cat Bitilasana/Cow flow take a few breaths in tabletop position and find equal weight through all four points in contact with the ground.

  • Come back to Adho Mukha Svanasana/Downward Facing Dog in between flows to consciously look for your symmetry again.

  • In Utkatasana/Chair stay more upright and lengthen through the crown, take your twists in this position with the hands in prayer position at your heart.

  • When you are in Anjaneyasana/Low Lunge with the knee on the ground, and off the ground, contain and support the stretch of the inner groin and hip flexor by lightly pressing your feet/knee into the ground and scissoring them together. Lift you pelvic floor here.

  • In Virabhadrasana II/Warrior II press strongly into your front heel and keep this connection as you move into Reverse Warrior.

  • Explore a wide legged Virabhadrasana I/Warrior I with the feet mat distance apart. Notice if this makes a difference to you hip bone position.

Ruth Delahunty Yogaru