Effort & Ease

Wake up! Winter’s done.

It can be common–and beneficial–to hibernate during the colder months of the year. Maybe you ate a bit more than usual, slept more, moved less.

That’s over now.

waking

If you haven’t yet begun to transition with the weather, you may start to feel sluggish and down. Upper respiratory issues, bloating, weight gain and low energy are common springtime imbalances.

Ayurveda (the sister science to yoga) also describes emotional and mental issues that arise at this time of year. We may cling to possessions, jobs, and friendships that are no longer beneficial. Avoidance, stubborness (!?!) and resistance to change are also common.

The solutions? Get moving and lighten up. Put effort into your practice…and find peace in the postures. Cultivate a steady and ease-filled yoga routine.

It’s a great time to use the excess energy you stored up during the winter. The standing series is particularly important. These postures invigorate the lower body (usually denser and heavier than the upper body), which tends to hold onto fat and water. The Awkward Series, the Balancing Series and the Separate Leg Series are critical. They strengthen the legs and open the pelvis.

At the same time, it’s important to keep the upper body open and relaxed, to prevent the accumulation of seasonal mucus. The two breathing exercises (Pranayama and Kapalabhati) help here.

Curious about Ayurveda? It’s a system for maintaining health and curing disease through adherence to natural rhythms and cycles, explains Dr. David Frawley. Ask Carolyn Jensen, senior teacher and integrative health counselor, about it. And stay tuned for an Ayurvedic workshop at the studio.

Sources: Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras; Ayurvedic Healing: A Comprehensive Guide; Yoga Journal

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