If there is an expansive thought that has filled your mind and you are starting to over–think it, come to the mat for Firebird practice! Firebird has a faster pace than many of the other practices in the series. Tune into the poses, find your breath, set your body in motion and allow the practice to focus your mind and rejuvenate your spirit.
The practice starts with the Earth-Rain Breath-Body Link. Palms touch as you inhale and draw the grounding Earth energy up and into your heart and mind, then rain down positive energy and confidence as you exhale.
“Raining light all the way around the body,” Kate says.
The pace is quick and the mood is light in this practice. Kate encourages you to “Try to keep up, but if not, meet us back at center.” There is room for exploration if you need it. You will always come back to Earth-Rain.
Done alone as a standing breathing practice, Earth-Rain will remind you of the need in life for both the grounding power of the Earth, which is able to absorb and endure great disasters; and the fluidity and cleansing beauty of the rain, which softens the Earth and makes it ready for new beginnings.
Sinking into forward fold feels calming as the shoulders are temporarily released from supporting the weight of the head. As you spring into hero’s pose, feel a lightness emerging from your heart. You cannot help but smile as you sink into child’s pose to again feel the comfort of the Earth. Release the tension in your back in this moment and feel the stretch in your arms as you embrace the calm.
In upward facing dog, feel the stretch in your chest and throat. As you deepen and gain more lift in the pose, you are reminded to keep your heart open. Then, appreciate the transition from up-dog, to downward facing dog, now stretching the back of your body from your shoulders to your heels. This is whole-body happy!
Swan pose is a call to grace and a reminder to stay level. Keep your hips even as you sink into the pose. Lift from your chest and remember to move forward with positive intent and keep an open heart. Then, gain direction with Firebird.
The Firebird Pose puts you in the mindset of an archer. Clear, level headed, and focused on the task at hand. Draw back the bow. Your gaze follows the path of your extended arm as it clearly points you forward. Swivel your hips and aim the bow to the back, reminded of the past and all that you’ve learned in the time before now. The next inhale fuels the fire within to look for what lies ahead.
Aim forward once more, then dip into Swan bow. Release the tension in your spine. Release your forehead to the earth, in the bow is a reminder to relax, keep your base level and your thoughts grounded.
A well-deserved Savasana leads to the sitting meditation with the hands in the Gesture of No Fear. You are ready to face life with a positive attitude tempered by balance, calm and equanimity.
Kate sets you forth with fearless fire and freedom to fly:
“Remembering every obstacle you meet in life can be seen as a block, or an opportunity.”
How do you feel after practicing the Firebird sequence?
Heather Gregory is an avid Namaste yogini and has been practicing the sequences nearly every day for three years. We enlisted Heather to embark on Sadhana, our 26 -week journey, and blog about each sequence.