Finding Inner Calm Through Yoga
For some, the hardest part of a yoga class is the beginning, when we are asked to take a moment and connect our mental and physical states of being. Calming our mind, taking stock of our body and centering our energy can be difficult tasks when we've just had to rush to get to practice.
So, how do we find our inner stillness and bring more depth to our practice? With yoga, it always comes back to engaging our breath and finding the dynamic tension in every pose. First, we must feel our connection with the Earth. As we send our energy down through the base of our spine and soles of our feet, we create this tension by simultaneously lengthening our spine and lifting the crown of our head toward the sky. In this way, we are uniting the mental and physical in our own body. Adding a deep pranayama invites energy to move through our body while also creating a sense of stillness and peace.
By making this mind-body connection, our practice will take on greater dimension, which we can carry off the mat and into the rest of our day.
Carla Irvin teaches Vinyasa yoga at the West Shore YMCA.