Ok. I have a confession… I’m always looking for the easy way out in my yoga practice. That’s not to say I don’t see the benefit of working hard and the safety that can come from muscular engagement in alot of poses or that I don’t love a good workout… but is life really just all about hard work?
One of the things I see in my students all the time (and, of course, feel in my own body) is this need to work hard. As if it doesn’t count unless we are giving 163%. But yoga is also about finding ease. Patanjali talks about a steady, stable comfortable posture in the Yoga Sutras. He also talks about using pain for purification but why do we seem to go out of our way for the pain but not the comfort?
This is why I look for the easy way out. The easy way requires some level of comfort and some level of, dare I say… slack. When we push ourselves, we often get in our own way. We are so muscularly engaged that we limit our range of motion so much more than necessary. Often we don’t even know what our full range of motion is. Often we physically cannot get there without engaging so much.
Enter Thai Yoga Massage. Try letting a friend take you into cobra pose. Don’t help, let them do it. The video below will talk you through it. Note that if you have any spine issues, you should only have this done by a professional.
Now, did you notice anything about your range of motion? I’m betting you just did the most super-humongous cobra of your life! With no effort!
On to the next step… do cobra pose on your own but remember the sensation of your partner helping you and try to recreate some of that – the imagination is a powerful tool.
Great job! Notice the difference? Less engagement, more movement. Maybe even less “pain is purification” and more “steady, stable, comfortable”? Keep practicing, it gets even better 😉
This is one of the ways that receiving (and giving) Thai Yoga Massage can really impact your yoga practice. Find a Thai therapist or take a workshop (I’ll be leading a one-week training course in Belize this December featuring daily yoga and meditation practices to help integrate what you are learning 🙂 and try it out… let me know what you discover!
Looking for more Thai?
- Check out these posts on the blog.
- I post new Thai Tutorials here on the blog each Tuesday. You can get them in a digest format, along with exclusive sequencing tips, Thai stories and more, by signing up for my newsletter.
- Check out the Thai resources page at www.marisawolfe.com
- Join me at a workshop! You can find my schedule here or contact me about arranging a workshop or training at your studio.
Looking for more ease and less effort in your practice? You might check out a Yin Yoga practice.