Baby It’s Cold Outside
Honestly, it should be cold this time of year in Vermont. Yet, the mild winter we have been experiencing (those who do not ski read this “enjoying”) has made the recent drop in temperature a little more dramatic. While I understand where I live and that the cold often implies snow and therefore great skiing, it doesn’t make keeping a solid yoga practice any easier for me.
The importance of heat during any yoga practice should never be overlooked. Warming the body through heat and a proper warm-up sequence helps to prevent injury. Beginning in a previously warmed room allows your warm-up sequence to heat your body from within, gradually increasing blood circulation and allowing muscles to gently loosen and prepare for more challenging poses.
But as I said, given where I live, heat is not always on my side. At times, bringing additional energy to my practice becomes
a mental state, one I foster with a mudra. Mudras are hand gestures that allow you to elicit a deep inner wave of power that you can then weave into your practice. If you have taken any of my classes recently, I specifically focused on “Earth Mudra” (Prithvi Mudra in Sanskrit). To perform this mudra, press the tip of your thumb and the tip of your ring finger together, forming a circle; remaining fingers can open to the sky. This mudra is said to stimulate energy which I translate to increasing my internal body temperature. Given the simplicity of this mudra you can begin your practice with it (come to a seated position, with the back of your hands gently resting on your knees, thumb and ring finger touch) and then continue to use it throughout your pose sequence when you require additional focus.
Through yoga we can learn staying warm is not just a physical but mental state as well. Happy winter…
~The divine in me salutes the divine in you, Namaste~