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Beyond the Poses: Learning How to Yoga

Have you ever wondered how yoga could help improve your strength and flexibility but been too shy about going to a studio because you felt you lacked the strength and flexibility to do yoga?

Ironic I know but the “i’m too stiff to do yoga” dilemma which masks an underlying embarrassment about perceived levels of flexibility is a common theme amongst would be practitioners. This is unfortunate because the benefits of yoga are well documented yet even most beginner’s classes lack the content and direction needed to satisfy the requirements of budding yogis.

The Yoga Fundamentals Course: The Keys to Yoga with Ewa Bigio™ is designed to break down the key elements needed to develop a strong foundation for a long term exploration and enjoyment of what can only be described as the gift of life.

In this course you will be taught the fundamental poses of yoga encapsulated within two sequences known as Surya Namaskar A and Surya Namaskar B ( colloquially known as the Sun Salutations ). Please refer to the photos below for the postures and their sequencing in both Sun Salutations. These two sequences embody key poses which provide the gateway to a rich and endless spectrum of more advances postures from which to draw from and evolve your practise. These two sequences in truth only feature 10 different poses which could be learnt in less than half an hour:

  • Mountain Pose – Tadasana
  • Upward Salute – Urdhva Hastasana
  • Forward Fold –  Uttanasana
  • Half Forward Fold – Ardha Uttanasana
  • Low Plank – Chaturanga Dandasana
  • Upward Facing Dog – Urdhva Mukha Svasana
  • Downward Facing Dog – Ado Mukha Svasana

And from Sun Salutation B:

  • Fierce Chair Pose – Utkatasana
  • Warrior 1 – Virabhadrasana A (right leg steps forward)
  • Warrior 1 – Virabhadrasana A (left leg steps forward)

You can learn 10 poses in half an hour but learning poses is not the same thing as understanding how to do yoga. This is because it is the subtle unseen details behind these poses and your understanding of these details that will cement your deeper appreciation of the practice. It is also your understanding of the subtle details that will keep you physically safe. As such your appreciation of the details is what will give you the greatest opportunity to progress over time and to be able to do so within the safest possible framework. This is where Yoga Fundamentals: The Keys to Yoga with Ewa Bigio™ steps in and fulfills the missing data that gets left out in a 60 minute studio class.

Take a look at the standing poses in Sun Salutation A below. Let’s consider what appears to be the simplest pose and the starting position, Tadasana (Mountain Pose). We all know how to stand right? Yet, standing in Tadasana demands a connection with earth through the active participation of your toes and the soles of your feet from which energy or prana is harnessed. This energy which runs through what is known as nadis or, energy channels in the subtle body is what gives a posture life. The activation of prana and lines of energy is one of the cornerstones of a strong yoga practice, without which a practice will lack vibrancy and unlikely to progress to deeper levels.

On a less esoteric level, lets consider Uttanasana or the Forward Fold. How often do you see students eagerly reach forward to touch their foreheads to their knees but in so doing arch their backs excessively to compensate for tighter hamstrings, resulting in a rounded hump? Poor alignment in this case can result in back pain over time and it will not allow a practitioner to advance to more advanced levels as the inherent issue of the tighter hamstrings are not being properly addressed.

These 10 postures can take a less than 30 minutes to learn but a lifetime to master. I have been practicing these postures for almost a decade now yet, I am continuing to discover new nuances in each and every one of these poses every day. My hope is that through Yoga Fundamentals, I will bring that same awareness to your practice so that your discovery of these nuances will serve to ignite and help your practice to prosper and grow.

For a fuller description of what to expect from Yoga Fundamentals and an explanation of the principles upon which this course was based upon please visit the dedicated page for this course.

Sun Salutation A

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Sun Salutation B

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I am a yoga teacher based in central Auckland. I teach a Yoga Fundamentals Course which runs twice yearly as well as yoga classes in the central Ponsonby area. For more details on time, venue and type of classes please refer to the Upcoming Events Page of this website. You can view my work on instagram at www.instagram.com/ewabigioyoga Contact me at ewalyhb@gmail.com

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