Quote of the week: “Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony.”
– Mahatma Gandhi
Warmer weather and a little bit of sun can sure brighten people’s moods. Springlike temperatures made me think about not putting off certain errands, which I tell myself I would do if it wasn’t so cold outside.
Instead, I compromised and opened my living room window and let the fresh air in. In addition to good weather, another element that can lighten one’s mood is yoga.
For the first time in a while I went to a yoga class. It’s not like riding a bike because in yoga you use muscles that have been hibernating. I like how the physical practice of yoga strengthens muscles by stretching and holding difficult poses.
When I first went to a class, I thought it was funny how at the end, you basically lay there with your eyes closed. Now, I find it relaxing. It gives your muscles time to recover before going about the rest of one’s day.
It was also interesting to find out that yoga is not just about physical strength, but also mental and spiritual. The art of yoga originated from ancient India. That explains the language yoga teachers use when describing poses and exercises.
For instance, downward dog is also called adhomukha svanasana. The pose is to stretch your hamstrings, decompress the spine and strengthen arms.
Balasana or child pose, is one of my favorites. This is more of a resting pose to stretch the neck, arms, hips and back. This pose is also good to help regulate one’s breathing. Child pose also is similar to a cat stretch, which is what I’ve always known it to be. The front knee is bent and the back leg is straight.
Warrior 1 can be referred to Virabhadrasana I. Basically, you’re in a lunge with square hips and your back foot is turned out and arms can be straight up in the air, or one reaching to the front and one reaching to the back.
Warrior 2 is called Virabhadrasana II. It’s similar to Warrior 1, but your back foot is not turned out and you are on your toes. The back leg can be straight or bent slightly. The front foot is flat with a bent knee.
The hardest pose, in my opinion, is the Chaturanga. I’m not sure what the English version means. You’re in a plank with bent arms and you lean forward. It’s usually part of a rotation of movements before going into cobra, or seal stretch, and ending in downward facing dog.
On Instagram, I follow bestyoga, and some of the poses and videos are amazing.
It looks like some people are floating from the floor or they are holding themselves up by one hand or arm. The posts that are the most intricate are the ones with multiple people balancing off each other.
What I also like about the Instagram feed is that they have instructional pictures and videos on how to do some of the awesome poses for beginners, intermediate and advanced.