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In the Flow: An Exploration of Yoga off the Mat

For some students, yoga means being dedicated to a certain lifestyle; for others it's a way to reduce the risk of injury or to round out an athletic routine. Both are fabulous reasons to step onto the mat. The following sequence can serve to quench both appetites. I designed this sequence as the tool for exploration because we are probably unanimous in our need to stretch out our hips.


I hope you enjoy this Vinyasa Flow with self-reflection questions based on the ancient Yoga Sutras. Review the questions before or after your time on the mat, and consider to what extent you’re already living the life of an authentic yogi (with absolute non-judgement and self-compassion, always!)


Abhyasa is the Sanskrit word for commitment. Making the decision and following through is more than half the battle. I thank my Self for showing up.


Vairagya means “non-attachment.” We show up to practice without worrying about the result. Stepping on the mat is already the purpose, not the means to achieving some alternate goal. We encourage non-attachment to the outcome of our practice, and release our concern with the ability to "do" or "not do" certain asanas. How do overexertion or laxity show up for me in daily life?


▪ When I'm in the flow, are there areas of my body that I could challenge a bit more? Are there places that always ‘pick up the slack’ and consequently suffer? Are there areas in my life that might benefit from a more balanced approach?

▪ In 'Savasana': I recognize the discipline, motivation, willpower, and dedication that brought me to the mat in the first place. I honour this effort, and then — I surrender completely.


Reflection: How do these concepts play out in your life? Where might you benefit from more awareness? Where can you soften your control?


Om to close.


I hope you've enjoyed a little taste of "practical philosophy" or "philosophical practice"!


Namaste,

photo credit to www.tummee.com