TRANSITIONING: ON + OFF THE MAT
The fall equinox has come and gone. The leaves have turned to beautiful shades of red and orange. They have fallen off of the trees that hang over our heads to rest on the ground beneath our feet.
Like the ever-changing seasons, we experience many transitional points in our lives. New careers, new relationships, a move, starting a family, or graduating from university, no matter what it may be we are constantly moving forward, evolving, changing in one way or another.
Being aware of these times of change is not only important in our every day lives but also within our yoga practice. Transitions from asana to asana are not meant to be a time to rush - forgetting our intentions and instead focusing on what’s next to come.
Rather these blissful moments have much more meaning and significance.
Here are a few tips on transitioning within our yoga practice and off of the mat:
Be here now – Instead of always worrying about future events, what we are doing after class, tomorrow, or next week allow yourself to be truly present and take it all in. This moment, right here, right now is the only one that exists and as time has its way of naturally moving us from point A to point B, we should allow it to do so while we ENJOY the present moment.
Be patient – It is common to see students transiting out of an asana as though they had been counting down to the cue “release”. Instead we need to appreciate that in our yoga practice we are allowed to slow down, let our bodies open up and respond to our breath. We need to do this with a mindset of patience while allowing silence and stillness to occur, creating space for ourselves to be vulnerable and accept what is.
Appreciate the beauty around you (in its many forms) – From the breath, to the sweat, to the tears, to the heat and to the rhythm of moving together in unison – we create true beauty within our yoga practice. This is the perfect time to reflect on and appreciate our surroundings and take this gratitude out into the world to share with others.
Amanda Burkowsky is a spiritual, breathoriented yogi and yoga teacher.
As a program facilitator and social work student, Amanda incorporates yoga and holistic healing to individuals and groups and believes in the empowerment of all people she works with.