alternatives to asana

from my experiences, anytime i am trying to establish a new routine, i will come face to face with roadblocks, or an obstacle.  so, in creating a consistent familyoga practice in our household, i knew we would face challenges.  in my head, i am already composing a blog post about what those challenges are….and how we plan to overcome them….or work with them.

but first, this post!

in sanskrit, (the yoga language – as i like to call it) – asana translates  to mean “seat.”  we, in the yoga community, most often use it to mean – yoga pose.  when you are practicing asana, you are practicing yoga poses – the foundation of almost all yoga classes.  by doing research on your own, or guided by the wisdom of a knowledgeable teacher, we learn that “yoga” (generally thought to mean – bending/stretching your body into the shapes of the yoga poses) is actually a much more complex system of creating and sustaining health and well-being.  asana is one branch of an eight-limbed tree – the tree as a metaphor for the yoga practice.

so, i know i have alternatives to asana – other concepts, other practices to share with my family – all of which are contained within the branches of the yoga tree.

a couple of evenings throughout the past few weeks, tiredness has set in before the practice has occurred.  it could be that we have had a long, busy day.  it could be that i sense that my  children are exhausted.  or that i cannot muster up the energy to prepare the yoga space and facilitate the asana practice.  during those evenings, we have instead chosen to sit on our rug in a circle and follow our breath for ten minutes.  or, we will just do a final relaxation (savasana), while incorporating some guided visualizations and affirmations.  we let go of the busyness of our day.  we give thanks for the good things we created or that happened to us throughout our day.  we close our eyes and breathe.  if the girls are laying down, brett and i will kneel and stroke their scalps, their foreheads, their necks.  to me…..this feels as important, or even more so, than teaching my children how to do a sun salutation (surya namaskar) or triangle pose (trikonasana).  for this is how the yoga practice can be fully integrated into the needs and desires of the family.  there is no one set way to embody this practice.  the various expressions of the yoga practice are many and can fit into virtually any set of circumstances or conditions.  how beautiful.

i hope this inspires you to create, and or maintain, some daily intentional time with yourself and your family.

About familyoga

i am a mama, a yoga instructor, a lover, a gardener, and a music maker. i live in a little town 19 miles northwest of downtown indianapolis, indiana. i will blog about familyoga - specifically, myself, my husband/hetero life partner, brett, and our children as we explore familyoga and good livin'. brett will also be blogging. he is a deep soul. he loves music and traveling, gardening and his family.
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One Response to alternatives to asana

  1. Cathy Southerland says:

    Just lovely . . .

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