I have really enjoyed the DVD, Yoga Journal 21 Day Challenge, I've been doing for the past couple weeks. It is so diverse with the poses, intensity and breathing techniques that I might just need to buy it for myself! I suppose I'm not super surprised as it is a product of Yoga Journal.
This week, the DVD player lead me to a hip opening sequence to reduce tension. Whenever I would hear my teacher, usually Judy, talk about hip opening, I was ready to get started! This was because if you were to ask me about my hip tightness in general, I would say, "oh, it's okay. No complaints of pain or tension." But it would be only after an intense hip opening sequence of poses that I would say, "holy cow, I had no idea that my hips were THAT jammed up!"
Speaking of cows, the pose I'd like to focus on this week is cow face pose (Gomukhasana). I was nicely transitioned into this pose and I was so happy that I was. It has been so long since I have done it. The leg positioning was the focus and since it had been so long since I'd done the pose, I couldn't recall the arm position! It is a bind with the hands clasped behind the torso. Time to focus on the arms in another practice session as it was about the hips this week anyway!
Cow face pose is an asymmetrical seated pose that is a hip and shoulder opener. As I said, I only did the lower body portion and found extra tightness in the right hip than the left. Apparently, it is normal to find one side easier than the other in this pose.
As memory serves from previous classes on hip opening, there can be intense emotion when stretching out the tension in the hips. According to Yoga in my Pocket.com, "[t]he hips are thought to represent how we feel about moving forward." I'll explore this in greater detail in another post as I don't totally have a grasp of how that all works. Interesting, nonetheless.
I enjoyed the stretch so much that I wanted to sit in the position all afternoon and I have to admit, I was slightly disappointed when we moved on. I guess thats a signal to practice cow face pose more often (do I say that about all yoga asanas?!?)
Tension begone, at least this week,
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Aspiring Yoga Teacher
I've practiced yoga since I was a pre-teen and have always found it to keep me centered. I will be a teacher one day and this is my journey to discover teaching and practice.