Your explorations in yoga & movement therapy reach a phase where your self-confidence, respiratory function, neurological linkups, flexibility and muscular strength improves. Your well-being is defined by a greater link-up between the mind, body and soul.
You might have often heard people saying things like, “I’m doing advanced yoga classes”. Or ask their teacher if they are ready for “advanced yoga”. Or observe people envying somebody whom they think are “really advanced in yoga”. This ties in with the commonly accepted notion of linear progression - one step at a time. So therefore, your equation with yoga too should march forward.
Sure, of course, it shall grow, but in a manner more profound and meaningful for you personally. Yoga & movement therapy will touch your keen thoughts in your head…your feelings that tug your heart and soul…and your emotions that relax or tense up your muscles and tendons - the overt and covert sum of you in a powerful way. An unforgettable empowering inward journey.
It’ll begin by reinforcing the ever-deepening cleft between social conditioning that prods you to believe in one directional ascent and your yogic maturity. It would not mean just accomplishing gravity-defying complicated asanas. Rather your betterment would come to represent different and mindful values. You’ll develop such an intimate knowledge of your strengths and weaknesses that you shall be able to judge your abilities more accurately. Meaning knowing when to push yourself or slow down, when you’ll need support or simply to decline attempting a pose. Hence, although it would be rewarding to rise to the occasion to accomplish a difficult posture, you would now let go of that fixed thought and embrace your physique’s frontiers. Losing your balance or trembling limbs will no longer bother you. You’ll get more satisfaction from the process of yoga & movement therapy than managing (or not) to do the split or touch your toes.
Your practise will reach a complete 360-degrees here. Sounds confusing? Are you moving in circles? Far from it. Your gurus will tell you how when you’ll do the same asanas you begin on a different plane. This would vary based on your past experiences and present physical condition.
They’ll show you ways and means to fine tune even the basic asanas to maximise its intensity and your muscularity. This will empower you to gradually render any asana more challenging by refining the minute details of it. This learning of scaling up or down a posture would be useful to adapt your home practise so as to suit your energy and stamina level on any given day.
You may find your teacher provide detailed descriptions related to each pose and their various modifications. Such as the whys of the alternate forms, their benefits and how you should feel in the different stages. They’ll also give ample space for your internal awareness to guide your movements in order to further consolidate the mind-body connection.
In the collective endeavour to enhance your practise, your instructor may (or not) dedicate more time to the meditative aspects of yoga. To facilitate your internal passage to a stronger spiritual, physical and mental bond. With every subsequent classes and the practitioner’s explanations, the time to access your invisible core would slowly shorten. With it shall emanate useful insights about aspects of life that nourish or harm you, what you hold most important to you, your purpose, your life journey…
Your guides might (or not) recall on previously discussed foundations of yogic thought and practice. They’ll softly remind you to increase the wholesome absorption of the ‘eight limbs of yoga’. Remembering, asanas, pranayama (breathing) and dhyana (meditation), and additionallyyama(moral conventions),niyama(self-discipline in external and internal practices),pratyahara(self-control over senses),dharana(concentration of the mind) andsamadhi(union with the spiritual). This would assist you fully understand the world around you and your relation to it. To filter out elements of day to day living which affects your thinking and the subsequent yoga, and exercise behaviours which fuel positivity and enliven your chakras (like maintaining a regular routine, eating more fruits and veggies, spending time in nature etc).
You’ll reach a stage where you’ll celebrate movements in all their forms, be it corporal, cognitive or metaphysical. You do it because you realise the good that it unleashes in you. How it impacts your psyche and health favourably. How you feel in the morning, how you sleep better, how you relate to people, etc. The empathy and love that flourishes for yourself and as well as your community inspires you to help others align their mind-body-soul connections.
From being in peace with yourself…you now embody yoga & movement therapy to be in serenity with your surroundings too.