The whole body benefits from Downward Facing Dog

At some point in my yoga practice I assumed I had mastered Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog).

The great thing about yoga is that we keep practicing and learning and deepening.

When my teacher Richard starting working with me on my Downward Facing Dog in December 2013 he helped me to stop pushing too deep into the pose in an unhealthy way in my upper body. He also helped me to feel more length in my spine.

Richard took the middle photo of me after some adjustments were made in class one evening. The pose started to feel differently in my body.

The bottom photo shows me pushing too far in my arms, pressing my chest toward the floor and my head is hanging. My back is rounded and not as long as it could be.

The top photo I have a long spine, length and space in my back.

I’ve been teaching yoga a little more than a year now. I tell my students that I want them to have a nice long Dog.

It is not necessary to get your heels to the mat, especially if it means you shorten your Dog to get your heels on the mat.

In … Continue reading

Learning about my sway back, core

On a day when I can sleep in, which is usually 6:30 a.m. Yes, 6:30 in the morning is sleeping in for me. How sad …

Anyway, Fridays I normally work from home. So I usually just roll out of bed and turn on the computer and work.

Today I got up about 5:45 and headed to the gym for a 6:30 a.m. hard core class.

Will pushes us pretty hard. But he never gives you a hard time if you take a break or just can’t do something. He will come over and correct you or give you an alternative.

The last 10 minutes or so of class we do ab work. In a lot of the ab exercises my back can only handle so much and I just can’t continue with the discomfort in my back.

So I asked him about it after class. I mentioned my weakish core (no matter how much yoga and abs I do I still don’t have a super strong core), my back issues, like my kyphosis, which is a curvature of the upper spine, and my sway back, which Will told me today is called lordosis and he also … Continue reading