Digesting all that comes with wrapping up the end of the year, the good, the bad and the neutral, I find from a yoga posture perspective it is best processed by practicing yoga twisting postures. Especially after a holiday like Thanksgiving that focuses on eating and getting together with family and friends to share what you are grateful for.
Here some benefits of yoga twisting:
Improves Digestive Function
When you twist you compress your digestive organs together. This causes a lack in circulation. When you release out of the twist there is a rush of fresh blood that enters your digestive organs. Similar to an outdoor hose of running water. When it is bent, the water flow nearly stops yet when the hose is straightened the water rushes out. Fresh blood flow translates to fresh oxygen and nutrients. Overall twisting increases blood flow to the digestive body which accelerates your mid body health.
As mentioned twisting cuts off blood supply to the digestive body and coming out of a twist floods your digestive organs with fresh blood. This rush of fresh blood can help to cleanse cells of any built up waste because with increased circulation comes increased cellular detoxification. Think of a sudsy sponge having scrubbed a dirty pan. To cleanse it you place it under fresh running water and twist it out to remove the dirty and soapy water. When you untwist it to absorb fresh water and soap you can continue your dish washing process. Perhaps this soaking and wringing out a sponge image can be useful in understanding how yoga twisting can detoxify your digestive body.
A Supple Spine
Our head naturally tilts forward, shoulders droop and our chest inverts because of gravities downward pull on us. Slouching eventually leads to back pain. Practicing yoga twists stretches and strengthens the mid body which reduces the back pain that comes from slumping forward as well as the stiffness of muscles and other tissues that surround the spine. With practice your back body will become more flexible and strong making you pain free and happy.
Yoga twists are great postures to practice if you have stress and anxiety. When you twist you help to open up your chest, shoulders and back. Releasing built up body tension results in an improved mental state. A feeling of calm takes over and your breath becomes more evident thus enabling you to experience the present moment.
Space to Receive
With improved digestive function, detoxification benefits, a more supple spine and feeling calm and present by twisting, you then have the space to start anew. Similar to a fall tree's branches twisting on the wind and shedding leaves, we can also look forward to a springtime bloom if we follow nature's cue and let go. Sure, uncertainty and fear will arise when there's any change in something yet the gifts that come with transformation only come in if you make the space.
Please join me in letting go and making room for 2015 at my "Twist and Set Yourself Free Yoga Workshop" Sat. Dec. 6 at 4pm @ www.bamboomovesyoga.com in Englewood, New Jersey.
Here we will ground and center with an easy to follow on your back twisting practice followed by a seated meditation and easy rhythmic breath work. We will deepen our "Twist and Set Yourself Free" yoga practice by moving through a slow and mindful vinyasa twisting sequence. You will be given techniques and the opportunity to go deeper than before into a variety of yoga twists. We will conclude our practice by acknowledging (via meditation and resting in a restorative yoga twist) what we want to let go of and that which we wish to receive in the next turn of the wheel in 2015.