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I'll Fly Away

- by Carey Sims at

There’s a sequence I teach in almost every class. For my students on mats, we lie on our backs and sweep our arms up and behind us while taking our feet together, really enjoying a gentle extension of the spine. We then let our arms and legs go out to the side kind of like we’re making a snow angel. In this shape we really embrace ease in the body. We explore five or six repetitions of this, linking our breath with our movements, and then land in rest with our arms wide and our feet wide.

I often think of my student Paul when I teach this. Paul recently passed away from the long term effects of Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson’s causes a rigidity in the body, and in Paul’s case, a strong inward contraction toward the midline. Creating the sensation of ease for a student with this condition can be challenging. For Paul, getting his body into the shape of our snow angel was hard. I would assist in placing his legs wide and he would “rest” there. Ease for Paul was relative.

At our studio, I teach students who are accustomed to practicing a flow style and often view postures like our snow angel as resting points or places to wait for whats next. I often remind them this is “what’s next.” I think of Paul and remind them that...keep reading on Carey's website here.

Photo credit: The Self Stories -

Carey Sims E-RYT500, NASM-CPT lives in Charlotte, NC. His mission is to to help students explore their bodies and breath in an accepting and non-judgmental way. He teaches “Gentle Back Care” at NoDa Yoga and offers Chair/Adaptive Yoga classes at various senior living centers and gyms in the Charlotte area. He is a student of Adaptive Yoga pioneer Matthew Sanford and an Accessible Yoga Ambassador and leads continuing education workshops on Chair Yoga and Adaptive Yoga. Carey holds degrees in Psychology from Winthrop University and Religious Studies from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte teaches modules on Yoga History and Ethics for several 200Hr Yoga Teacher Trainings.

To book Carey for a workshop or to add him to your YTT faculty click here.

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