A few days ago, I finally came back to my mat after resting from a nasty cold and decided to take it long, slow and deep… not to ease myself into the practice, but to experience what I often give my students. Long, slow, and deep holds are not my favorite. Most vinyasa students dread it too. We’d rather move and flow and do as many chaturangas as we can. However, you’ve heard it as a student and probably said it as a teacher too that “the pose really starts when you want to come out of it.”
I’m thinking the only thing that is really gonna start if you hold me in this pose for another breath is a round of cussing, eye rolling, and threats to never come back to class.
Why would I do such a thing to torture myself and why does your yoga teacher do this to torture you? Wake up call… no one is torturing you except YOU.
I’m certain your teacher has given you permission to take child’s pose whenever you need it. But why don’t you take it?
For some weird reason, we like to sit in this low grade misery. We’re wondering when the hold is over. We’re getting irritated with the burning sensation. We’re looking around hoping to catch another’s glance so we can both make a nasty face at the teacher. We look everywhere except at the moment because all of these take us out of the present moment.
Ask yourself this: are you choosing patience or panic?
Panic sends you into that low grade misery of anticipation. Choosing patience instead brings you back into reality. Ok so your legs are burning. What better time than now to practice breathing? And the most magical thing happens… you can witness that burning sensation dissolve, your judgements and anger disappear, and now you love your yoga teacher for giving you some awesome toned muscles. Now isn’t that what you came to class for? Ok maybe you didn’t come solely for a tight rear end but it’s a bonus that you got so much more… to tone the muscles of your mind and to practice meditation that didn’t require you to sit alone in a dark cave.
Now where in your life are you still sitting in a low grade misery because you’ve chosen something else rather than patience?