When I think of starting a home practice it’s all about the starting and not about the practice. How do you get to that instant, on your mat, with at least a few moments stretching out in front of you to curl your body and savor your breath? A few moments before the day crashes in and whips up a whirlwind whilst a residue of the practice frames your exploits, enriches your interactions with poignancy and your actions with aesthetic delight.
In relation to the starting, this blog is less an inspirational pep talk and more a bunch of rather practical tips gleaned from my enchantment with relatively high demand group of Ashtanga Yoga (and Ashtangis with their intensity and their shadows).
Here’s my list:
Then the practice. And that’s easy. You’re there, on your mat, breathing. You have a body. You are a body. Your centre of motivation dissolves in bodily tissues. You are intention, you are vibration, you are light. You are tubes and fluids. As for technique? Move or be still, gaze into the test-tubes of your experience, fired with the intensity of your focus. Release all that you find.
For form or structure try out things you’ve done in class. Make them your own. Teachers should be delighted to give you simple pointers for getting started at home. There are heaps of great classes on the internet (but, stern note, your screen can’t give you feedback on foot placement endangering your knees and such, and should never replace working with a teacher. End lecture). Keep it simple and short rather than awkward and ambitious – and never repeated. How many times a week is up to you. Three is where the magic starts for me but forget all the rules – you are not a machine but a miracle.