balanced practice yoga

Whether you’ve clocked it or not, a good (😉) yoga teacher tries very hard to balance your body and your mind.

First the body.

The human frame is a finely balanced structure of bones and supporting soft tissues, all working with and against each other to hold us up and move us around. It’s complex and beautiful but if the balance between strength and flexibility is upset, we feel tension, pain and can become injured.

We have many opposing muscle groups; biceps/triceps, quads/hamstrings, hip flexors/gluts, abdominals/lower back, chest/upper back and many more…… When one of these muscles is contracting, the opposing muscle will relax. Read more about the Reciprocal Inhibition Reflex and other anatomy stuff here. If we only strengthen one side of an opposing muscle group, and/or only work in one plane of movement, imbalances occur.  Think of the way you feel after many hours hunched over a desk, followed by an hour in the gym on a cross trainer, then sitting in the car, then on the sofa.  Yoga sequences can also be unbalanced.  For example, if we only stretching hamstrings and gluts and never contract them, over time they become weak.

In my classes this week, we will flow through and balance some key opposing muscle groups.

And the mind, well that’s just about giving you the spaceto take what you need from your practice.