Have you ever noticed what happens in your physical body when certain emotions arise? These feelings are meant to move through us; instead, often we allow them to bunch up inside of us, crystallising tension, fear and anxiety into real physical knots.
One of my favourite ways to untie unnecessary knots in my body is through delicious, restorative openings. This posture opposes the usual stance of rounded shoulders which overtime leads to the shortening of our pectoral muscles.
So many of us store our feelings in our shoulders allowing them to hunch inward, closing in on the chest in an attempt to protect our vulnerable hearts. By taking this deep, yet gentle opening we can put ourselves in a more positive place, still feeling the safety of stillness and from there, able to open up to the world.
While laying in this posture, I can almost guarantee that you will feel more accepting, content and loving.
- Choose your prop. If you have a yoga bolster or brick then use that, if not, you can use a firm cushion or two softer ones.
- Lay your prop(s) horizontally underneath your back at the level of your shoulder blades (bra strap line) then turn to face away. Keep your chin tucked and come down onto your forearms. At this stage you can use your hands to adjust the prop if you need to so it will sit under your shoulder blades.
- Take your hands to your head and allow the whole weight of your head to go into your hands so that the neck is relaxed. Take the head back and assess whether you need a lower prop to go underneath the back of your head. You want to feel comfortable and relaxed in this beautiful heart opener rather than overly strained and uncomfortable. Be gentle.
- When you’re ready to rise, come up in the same way you came in by taking your hands to your head and taking the whole weight. Step by step, without straining your neck, you can come into a seat again and revel in the delight of presence.