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As I always say, " Alignment based Yoga is Primary Medicine as it is the balanced relationship between your body, mind, and higher subtle body to Gravity. Our life force is carried by our blood. If your circulation is more efficient, your whole life will become more efficient. When you become "out out of balance", everything else, besides your knowledge and alignment in your posture is a band aid or, Secondary Medicine i.e. physical therapy, massage, chiropractic, surgery etc. "
Todd Johnson P.S. See Universal Alignment Principles Below.
Universal Alignment Principles:
Working on our Universal Alignment Principles in every pose (asana).
From our foundation up: (Samasthiti or "Equal Standing, Sitting, or Lying")
Example: Tadasana or "Mountain Pose "
Legs/Feet together, pressing evenly into the floor.
Micro bend in the knees, raise the kneecaps up by engaging the quads (front thigh muscles).
Scoop the tailbone and lift the pubic bone 2/3rds up towards the navel.
Inner rotate the mid thighs towards your mid line 50% max force.
Draw the navel back and up towards the rib cage by engaging your core muscles.
Draw the spinal vertebrae up towards your head and away from your hips.
Extend the crown of your head up towards the ceiling to accentuate this. Make sure your chin is parallel to the ground.
Spread the shoulders out towards your sides and then down towards the floor.
Chest and space in between the shoulder blades should not get shorter here, rather, they should expand evenly 360 degrees.
The middle of the shoulder muscles, the deltoids, should not move towards the front of your body or towards the back of your body. They stay centered.
Outer rotate the upper arms close to the shoulder socket while keeping the elbows close to the rib cage.
This will help the expansion of the chest and shoulders while providing protection for your shoulder joint, especially when bearing weight and when your arms go up over your head.
Extend the crown (the highest part of your skull) towards the ceiling.
Keep your chin parallel to the ground, while you extend your crown towards the ceiling.
Last of the body engagements, but not least, bring the front rib cage back towards the spine. (I like to put this last because by the time we do all the above, that front rib cage likes to jut out forward and cause the spine to lose length, the space between the shoulder blades to become short, and the lower back to hyper extend.
Breath - Keep the breath even, inhaling and exhaling through the nose.
As you draw in the breath, the lungs should expand in a 360 degree direction, filling the body with oxygen rich red blood cells to nourish and help every cell in the body to metabolize properly.
Draw the air in through the bottom of your throat by constricting the muscles around the bottom wind pipe. Try not to use the nasal and sinus part of your face to draw in the air. The former is more efficient for balanced health.
Sama Sthiti Principle: Sama Sthiti means equal standing. Every part of your body has a role or physical engagement to maintain simultaneously throughout the whole time you are in each and every pose, standing, sitting, inverted, lying down, or revolved.
For the beginner, it is difficult to maintain all the engagements of the body at the same time throughout the entire length of the pose. This is where the work is. We want to train the body to accomplish Sama Sthiti or equal standing in every engagement, in every pose. As the practitioner progresses, they should be able to get closer and closer to the principle of Sama Sthiti.
See you in class!
Todd Johnson teaches these universal alignment principles in his yoga class at Energies Balanced Yoga Studio on Thursdays from 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm.
Sharks have sensory receptors on the sides of their snouts called the ampullae of Lorenzini. If you rub a shark’s snout just right, you will cause the shark to go into a state of “tonic Immobility”. Tonic immobility is when a shark becomes immobile as in a trance state when you can actually flip or turn them in any direction without the shark moving a muscle. Scientists use tonic immobility techniques when performing surgery on captured live shark specimens. Be careful when you try this, because sharks do not like to be rubbed the wrong way.
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