Reclaiming a sense of your youth may be as simple as taking your Namaste Yoga practice to a place where that energy exists in its purest form: a playground. Think of the daring youngsters exhibit when first attempting to climb monkey bars, hang upside down or experience a slide? The younger set experiences all that we do in practice, but often with less emotion or judgment tied to the results of their efforts. They play, and learn unwittingly through their process; whereas adults often expect the process to teach them, and get so bent on learning we forget to simply play!
Combining sequences such as Sun Moon and Head to Knee allows you to really concentrate on the tight muscles in the backs of the legs, an area of the body that seems to hold tension more stubbornly than others. If the playground is currently in use, you may find yourself enchanted by giggles and imaginative descriptions of the observations of its inhabitants. The best way to relax, is to smile, right? If you need to shield a giggle to avoid the little ones becoming aware you are paying attention, Head to Knee pose is a great place to express that amusement.
Poses that may have grown drab before can now become more playful and mindfully expressed. Rising into Monkey pose near monkey bars is sure to have you extending fully into those lengthened and lifted curves with your best intent. Needle pose gains new life as the body becomes a rocket, lining up straight and aiming for the sky.
Use the Sun-Moon breath-body link to breathe in the energy of your surroundings: the vigor of youth, perhaps a cleansing breeze, warming sun, even crashing waves if near water. It's your moment to cast cares aside and have fun with your practice! Revel in the carefree moments of your youth, and be sure to carry that weightless feeling with you off the mat and long into your day.
How will you bring a sense of play to your practice? Be sure to share your #namasteNewViews with us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. We award a Namaste travel yoga mat at random to one contributor each week.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Heather Gregory is an avid Namaste yogini and has been practicing the sequences nearly every day for nearly four years. Her favourite part of Namaste is the opportunity it affords to find her calm, collected center and carry that forward through each day. We enlisted Heather to share her #namasteNewViews as she explores the practice with our iTunes downloads, and blog about her experiences. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org