This is the term I have been using some of the classes I have been planning, practicing and teaching. Those of you who have been practicing with me for the last ten years or so know, that my classes have morphed effervescently as my personal practice and focus has changed. Accepting your body exactly as it is in the present moment means changing your practice every time you step onto the mat. Some of the changes to my practice are due to physical needs, and some due to emotional and mental needs.

Moving our bodies in a mindful way on our mats builds our balance and self esteem, strengthens and lengthens us, and hopefully creates a sense of ease in the body and deepens our awareness of it. Vinyasa style yoga is flowy and linked with the breath meaning postures lead into postures and sets are repeated. Flows can be slow and deliberate or swift and free. In it’s simplest form it is focused on breath moving with the body and perhaps some mantras and meditation components added in. Kundalini yoga is very different from vinyasa and while sometimes the kriyas (dynamic sets of movements) can be physically demanding, much of the yoga is founded in specific pranayama or breathing techniques, mantra and visualization to reach into the subtle body, our energy body, to ignite and purify our energy, to move the energy throughout our bodies and then use the harnessed energy to reshape the way we live in our bodies.

Kundiyasana reflects a blend of vinyasa and kundalini style yoga. As I continue to practice and perfect the powerful techniques of kundalini and feel its impact in my own body, I then weave them into my vinyasa style class. There is always an emphasis on opening the energy and balancing it at the chakra points. There are so many chakras or wheels of energy in our bodies, but we focus on the seven main ones located from the base of the spine to the crown of the head. When the energy at these chakra points is out of balance, our physical, emotional and mental state can also become out of balance and we may feel dis-ease in the body, heart and mind.

Showing up every morning on our mats to be with what is present is not always easy. It would often be easier to skip the practice and not face what is going on with “me”, but although the reward for mindfulness may not be obvious all the time, over time, I have found that the daily showing up on my mat has profound impacts in my family life, relationships and daily activities.

Sometimes I practice vinyasa. Sometimes I practice kundalini. Sometimes I put them together and practice kundiyasana. I love sharing the variety of practices with my friends at the studio, and I hope they are weaving pieces and parts of what we do together into their own day-to-day life.

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