What It Means To Master Your Asana Practice

Bira
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Whether you are just beginning your yoga journey, or if you are a seasoned yogi, know that there is a sure way to master your asana practice but it lies beyond certifications and countless hours on the mat. There is a path to attaining alignment in all positions, to developing your attention and to controlling your breath, to opening your mind and your heart, where physical flexibility is not really the main focus or goal.

To start walking on this path, we should look inside (as always) and first go back to the basics, to really look at what we are doing in a yoga class. While this seems very simple, it can be tricky. To view your practice from a neutral and fresh perspective means to ask and understand why you are doing yoga and also identify what you seek to gain from it.

If you do this—if you can take this introspective leap—then focus, strength and alignment will come.

Do you know what Yoga can really give you?
Are you interested?

If you are just beginning in this new world and facing the huge “yoga market”, you will find all levels of teachers speaking from their own perceptions. Never hold on to just one teacher’s opinion—not even the big ones. All teachers from all levels and backgrounds are just as much a student as you are. This is the beauty of yoga—it is all about finding your OWN personal truth.

There are contradictions between the various yoga schools, and yet all of them are speaking their own truth. Because in the end, we are all one.

Most of the time, technical information is the same. We must know it, but really, this is the simple part to learn. The technical information (such as anatomy and proper alignment) is important, but anyone can memorize and repeat it, and apply it to their asana practice. Regardless, if you don’t know why you are doing it or where you want to go, your practice itself is not aligned—you are merely scratching the surface.

A perfect physical body, along with wonderful health and a clear mind are only the by-products that will come to ANYONE who practices yoga for a certain time. This is no surprise.

The foundation of your practice begins with the visible, physical aspect. The endpoint, where you begin to master your practice, is when you can align yourself in your asanas naturally and effortlessly, in one breath, with the deepness of the practice imprinted in all your subtle bodies. This is the crown jewel of Yoga.

Only then may you FEEL the alignment coming from within your own system, and not from your eyes in a mirror, aligning your bones, muscles, nerves, breath, heart and mind, with the true Source of your own clear intention. This is the union of which the Sanskrit word “Yoga” speaks.

Love & Light,

Bira

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Bira

Bira is an author and international Yoga instructor. He has practiced traditional Hatha Yoga for 19 years and learned from Himalayan monks in India. He has taught yoga since 2007, bringing his understanding of the spiritual practices into the physical poses. He also created his own online courses on Yoga History and Philosophy.

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