Holiday Practice – Twisted

Twists are neutralizing. As a category, I find them easy and they feature in practice as release asanas. So, it is is not often that they get exclusive attention. Somehow, today I felt the need for them and so it was dorsal work in standing and seated twists. Sirsasana and Sarvangasana were lighter as a result.

Parsva to Parivritta or then parsva and parivritta. We progress from a simple twist to a revolved action. And it is interesting at many planes. Often, as part of the learning process, we compromise one part or action to gain access to another and in this manner stack up to strike the pose in its entirety. Parivritta poses are a case in point. They require not just a turn but also a crossing over. There is merit in viewing them as a way to train the mind to ‘cross over’ from a rigid or fixed view. How do you see beyond your own limited understanding? Twists make you inhabit a different place and necessarily the gaze changes. It opens up possibilities, potentialities while showing more than what is visible. The mechanics of the asana are also interesting with its inbuilt brakes and levers giving it a sharpness.

Usually, I’ve found agility of reflexes post twists but today was more of a sense of quiet. I started with lying down on a brick and proceeded with simple seated twists, standing parivritta poses (trikonasana, parsvakonasana, ardha chandrasana) followed by Bharadwajasana 1, 2, Marichyasana 3, Adho Mukha Svanasana, Sirsasana, Sarvangasana Setuband Sarvangasana (nice lifted one from sarvangasana) and Savasana.

The holiday month is almost over and I think I will pause these daily (attempt at daily) posts. They began as a way to anchor myself in a slack period, workwise. It would have been easy to get dejected otherwise and this exercise has been most useful in maintaining a semblance of routine. But, now there are other commitments that need my attention.

The institute is abuzz with admissions and it is nice to meet familiar faces. I’m just happy to be back in a space I love and am looking forward to classes in the big hall. This month has shown me that I’m rusty for not having had the benefit of a teacher’s touch. It has been over 2 years and I do feel there has been a level of holding back compared to when I was attending in person.

Many things have changed in these pandemic months. Bodies have aged, minds are tired and hearts are heavy. There is much angst in the world with anxiety, violence, climate crisis, war and uncertainty. I suppose in a digital world, we are simply more keenly informed but not as connected. Touch. Is there any greater connection than that? Circling back to twistings, they are wonderful connectors as they complete the circuit of touch.

4 thoughts on “Holiday Practice – Twisted

  1. It is a blessing that twists come easily to you. They definitely hit the “reset” button, so to speak, but they also show me where I am inflexible and unbalanced. The past two years have made us all pause and, perhaps, reset. I will miss your daily (almost) blog posts and look forward to hearing about the activities in the Institute. In so many ways you are my lifeline.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your thoughtful comments Suzy. It feels good to have this connection over the internet via words and a living practice (on and off the mat). In fact, your daily posts are super inspirational. The discipline and dedication to sit down is something I admire very much.

      Liked by 1 person

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