You probably have your favorite postures that you come back to regularly. And sometimes, with such repetition, those postures may begin to feel a bit too comfortable, maybe even stale. This is the perfect opportunity to infuse some creativity into your practice and use the symbolism of the posture’s names to reignite your asana practice. Here are a few common postures to get you started:
Anjali Mudra: Often referred to as prayer position or hands to heart, we can easily see how it is a gesture of gratitude or honor. Look a little closer and try this mental shift. Rather than pressing your palms together, cup your palms a tiny bit. Into this gap, mentally place your intention or prayer, or leave it unfilled to invite blessings to enter your life.
Tadasana: Mountain pose is the basis for every other posture in yoga (yes, even in prone postures and restorative practices). In mountain pose, it is easy to imagine your body actually becoming the mountain – solid, strong, taking up space. What if you instead imagine that you are standing on top of a mountain? Here at the peak of the mountain top, you can feel and see the vastness, the infinite potential that surrounds you. Use your third eye to imagine the brilliant blue sky and reach into it.
Vrksasana: Tree pose invites you to embody a tree – wide, strong roots, a stable trunk, and branches expanding up and out. But beyond that, the wobbling and swaying we usually do while trying to balance in tree pose is much like a tree being rocked by the wind. In a strong wind, trees that cannot bend will fall. Same with people in tree pose. If you lose your flexibility and try to stand stiff, you will fall. Go with the wind, stay rooted in your strength, and you can sway without breaking.
Ananda Balasana: If you’ve ever seen a baby playing with her toes, then you can immediately connect Happy Baby pose with a feeling of carefree movement. Use time in Happy Baby to remind yourself that your body is open to exploration every day and delight in the movements and tasks it is able to perform.
Savasana: In Corpse pose, we lay as still as possible, but not in a morbid way. Instead, use your meditative time in corpse pose to allow the dead parts (the inflammation, the anger, the injury, the fatigue) to drain from your body as you rest on the ground. With each inhale, renew your energy reserves and refresh your mental state.