When I was in primary school my parents enrolled me to gymnastics…
Even as a little girl, my back refused to move much. I had a bit of movement in my lower back, and that was about it. I often missed out on all the exciting exercises, the flips (and trust me I’ve tried running really fast and jumping really high…but it wasn’t enough)…Standing up after a flip – requires some flexibility in the back.
15 years later I’ve joined a start-up company, just to add to my stiff back – my shoulders started to close down while sitting long hours in front of a computer.
Luckily, the company brought this amazing Yoga teacher to the office once a week:-) She was an Iyengar teacher and she used all these props and put us in all these weird positions, desperately trying to open our bodies…we were sore for the whole week until we saw her again. We loved it.
Now, another 15 years has gone past, Yoga is a bigger part of my life, and back-bends…well, they are still a struggle, but I have learnt to love them!
Upward Bow or Wheel Pose (Urdhva Dhanurasana) has many benefits.
It Stretches the chest and lungs, strengthens the arms and wrists, legs, buttocks, abdomen, and spine. It also stimulates the thyroid and pituitary and increases energy and counteracts depression.
It is opening the heart chakra and all of the sudden, after the initial panic of the posture is calming down, we can breath. The lungs are open and the heart is open and it could feel a very vulnerable moment.
For years, I had fears from this moment. Opening up is not easy. But now…it’s the most magical moment, it’s a moment of freedom. a moment of acceptance. An eye and heart opening moment.
When releasing the posture and resting on the mat and closing the eyes – the sensations and emotions start to rise. Some of them pleasant, some less pleasant. But the underlying process is building the awareness and noticing. This is the purpose of it all for me. noticing and fully being present in the moment. This posture forcing me to be just there – present in the present moment.
Yoga is the best.