Thursday, February 28, 2008


Drishti (the point of focus, where the eyes gaze)
We're rolling out Drishti as a weekly yoga column to enhance our practice on and off the mat.

Last week our exploration of the space between the end points of our exhales and inhales led us to thoughts about extension. In particular, where the motion into an asana stops and where the actual seat in the asana begins. Of course, there is a settling motion, but we strive to become aware of the ideal point of extension for our practice. We can gain a better understanding of sustainability as we focus upon this extension.

In our practice if we continuously strive to reach further and expand into an ideal manifestation of the asana we may meet with acceptance of this practice from our bodies at the outset. Though there is an acceptance we often experience a post practice "burn" that some begin to identify with a successful practice. It is this identification that can distort our perception and limit our ability to determine the asana's proper manifestation for us. This distortion can limit the therapeutic effects of the practice and can increase our vulnerability to injury.

A sustainable practice on our mat is a practice that strives to be aware of the body's resources and respects those resources by knowing what the body can and can't handle. If we gently ease away from the goal of the proper manifestation of an asana and towards a deeper awareness of our bodies prior to an extreme extension we may gain awareness of a subtle but satisfying and sustainable "burn."

This week we'll further our work with sustainability and expand upon our work with pranic visualization.

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