“There is more to life than increasing its speed.” -Mohandas K. Gandhi
Relaxation is one of the primary benefits of a hatha yoga practice, as well as one of the sweet gifts of life itself. When our body and mind are relaxed and at ease, we can function optimally, allowing a balanced, calm and harmonious state throughout. However, a relaxed body and mind can be challenging for many to attain.
Relaxation Often Takes Practice
The practice of relaxation involves the ability to let go. Often we only feel this experience from the state of sleeping, however this can be a conscious practice as well. In hatha yoga, and ayurveda, we practice active relaxation so that deep healing may occur naturally in the body-mind. The more we develop our ability to create a relaxed state in our hatha yoga practice, the more we begin to develop the skills to manage stressful situations off of our mats with clarity and ease. From the standpoint of being of service to our families, friends, and communities, the more relaxed we are, the more present and at ease we may be in their presence. When our cup is full we have more to give!
In honor of this month’s relaxation theme, we are challenging all Kunga students and teachers to take 10 minutes every day for the entire month to practice savasana in all Kunga yoga classes, at home on the couch, in the car with the seat reclined during lunch break-wherever you can!
“Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are.” ~Chinese
For Kunga teachers, this is a great opportunity to lead a longer guided savasana. Techniques you may wish to incorporate into your classes include:
- Progressive Muscle Relaxation
- Contraction & Release
- Creative Visualizations
- Affirmation Repetition
- Hypnotic Music
- 15 Minutes of total silence.
Students may wish to work at home with guided relaxation audio or simply find a quiet, well-ventilated room to enjoy silence, or to take in the sounds of your home while you lie resting. Try to let go of any attachments to sounds, feelings in the body, and thoughts, allowing your body and mind to relax into whatever may be present. Take note of how you feel, noticing if some days may be more difficult to lie still. You may wish to try journaling this month if you do not take a daily savasana, and at the end of the month, notice the gifts you have received by simplifying and doing nothing!
“For fast-acting relief, try slowing down.” -Lily Tomlin