While we are all enclosed and sheltered and being responsibly distant I’m reminded of the practice mode of encasing one pose in the center of a series. We do a chain of asanas towards one center asana. The phase of going in is called pratiloma vinyasa. Pratiloma vinyasa moves from simple to complicated; it charges the body and ignites intelligence.
From that center pose, we then practice the same poses in reverse order returning to the first pose. This phase of returning is called anuloma vinyasa. Anuloma vinyasa is returning as we pacify the complete system of body and consciousness.
This mode of practice reminds me of moving towards and away from things. How arriving is different than leaving, and how we will all see this current crisis through to the other side.
The chain of standing poses below can be done a variety of ways such as:
- All to one side, going into final pose then coming out to first pose. Then repeat entire chain for the other side.
- All to both sides, going in to final pose, then all to both sides coming back to first pose.
- Set up an “expanding chain”. Practice #’s 1,2,3,2,1 then 1,2,3,4,3,2,1, then 1,2,3,4,5,4,3,2,1 etc. for as far as you want to go.
- Hold each one for 2 to 4 breaths
- Hold each one for 2-4 minutes
- Do the whole chain with the back to the wall
- Do the whole chain facing the wall
- Do the whole chain with back foot to the wall, or lifted knee to the wall for Tree Pose
Open your practice with the invocation or just sitting quietly, becoming centered and focused.