- by Carey Sims at careysims.com
What if when we moved our bodies and interacted with them, we made the conscious decision to connect with them as opposed to correcting them? This requires a practice of deep listening and patience. When we find places in the body that have tightness or intense sensation maybe instead of immediately trying to stretch or fix that place, we asked ourselves “What is that about?” This way we are not assigning a value to our experience and may discover ourselves patterning into certain movements that are yielding outcomes we don’t particularly like. Now there is the possibility to make another choice or take another approach. Ex: Often the places we stretch habitually need to be strengthened, not stretched, etc.
One of the main reasons I have issues with certain types of yoga styles is that many are too dogmatic, often idealizing postures and forgetting that a shape is simply a vehicle to explore ourselves. We are all pressured enough by expectations placed on our bodies that aren’t our own. Our practice doesn’t have to be another place we engage in that sort of dialogue. Move, breathe, reflect … it’s not that serious. Example: When you find yourself micromanaging your foot position in Warrior I or ask yourself “Why?” If it’s because you feel stable and grounded, or you’re relieving tension in your hip or knee, or you feel more balanced, etc … then great. If it’s because a teacher told you that’s the “right” way to do the shape, question that and see if it’s “right” for you. This is your body and this is your practice. When moving it ask yourself, “Am I connecting to my body or correcting it?” There’s nothing wrong with you. You are inherently whole. You do not have to be fixed or micromanaged. Connect to yourself and see what you discover.