Downward Dog or Adho Mukha Svanasana; yoga pose in an easy to follow 5-minute video from Peter Blackaby on how to do this well-known yoga pose.
Tension you don’t need in your yoga practice
Peter is a well know and hugely respected yoga teacher, osteopath and author. He runs unit 4 in Brighton. I have been working with Peter for a few years now, and his approach is so centred and secure. I hope this video will help you.
Do you know when you are tense? If you could stand in the middle of a wide-open space and shout and scream as loudly as you possibly could for a second or two, you’d feel the tension of the effort to do this. The strain and tightness in the body. When that effort subsides, would you “feel” the opposite? The lack of tension!
Tension Losing Asanas
Pete makes a great point about why we should practise asana like the Downward Facing Dog pose in his book Intelligent Yoga. He argues that they can teach us to differentiate the feel of a relaxed muscle from that of a working muscle but also of a working muscle from a tense muscle. Surely nobody wants to feel tense when practising yoga?
This group of postures has a precise purpose: to help us find support for the body through the skeleton and the floor to reduce muscular effort.Peter Blackaby
Bones and Yoga
I always felt that our bones and the support they gave us were significant. I particularly noticed this in my feet. What was at play here, I’d ask myself. As I gravitated to the yoga practised by Scaravelli inspired yoga practitioners, feet, bones, and gravity came to the fore. What felt instinctual to my practice had meaning.
Using bones, as opposed to muscles, requires no “effort”; and when we arrange our bones skillfully, muscles then have less work to do. It is not that muscles then have no work to do, but they will have less work. And in terms of efficiency, that is advantageous.Peter Blackaby
Inspired yoga teaching
I aspire to teach like this. I have taught yoga for many years, and it amazes me how we continue to evolve with our practice when we are present in the kindest way to what we feel. I run small classes, teach workshops and retreats on the Isle of Wight.
Please get in touch if you would like to know more.