As Much Space

During my Yoga Teacher Training, a guest instructor came to give a lecture on A + P. The instructor was a body worker and yoga instructor and said something that I often think about during my practice, but also sitting at the dinner table. He said, "You want to take up as much space as possible."

Think about it: when sitting and standing you want to be as tall as possible. Even in twisting poses, before we twist we first and foremost extend our spines. There are times for compression, although even in those poses, for the part of the body that is compressing, a different part is usually extending. Next time your favorite teenager is slumping across the table from you, ask them to take up as much space as humanely possible. The effect is that of a plant inhaling its way towards the sun. It is lovely.

So, today,. pretend that you yourself are your favorite teenager. Ask yourself to take up space. You deserve it.

As Much Space

For the beginning of this practice, have yourself or your class pretend they are in a King Size bed (let's say it's a futon; my folks fed me by selling futons). You are just waking up, but are taking your time with it. Roll around the bed, stretching every which way, and make morning noises. If you are in front of a class, demonstrate, as people might be hesitant at first. Once they see how good it feels to make morning noises, though, it might be hard to stop them. So, let this go on for a couple of minutes. Eventually, groan your way to seated. Yawn.

  1. Simhasana (Lion's Breath)
  2. Seated Sun Breaths (10)
  3. Knee-down Tadasana (Mountain Pose)
  4. Parigasana (Gate Pose). Swing the non-planted hand in circles about you.
  5. Cat/cow in table
  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 on other side
  7. Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
  8. Three-legged dog, drawing circles with non-planted knee
  9. Uttanasana (Forward Fold)
  10. Tadasana (Mountain Pose). Raise arms above head. Hold for 10 breaths.
  11. Virabhadrasana III (Warrior III Pose)
  12. Virabhadrasana I (Warrior I Pose)
  13. Simhasana in Virabhadrasana I
  14. Adho Mukha Svanasana
  15. Repeat steps 7-14
  16. Prasarita Padottanasana (Standing Wide Leg Forward Fold)
  17. Utthita Tadasana (Five Pointed Star Pose)
  18. Kaliasana (Goddess Pose). Hold for 10 breaths or Kapalabhati (Breath of fire)
  19. Tadasana with raised arms
  20. Vinyasa to floor
  21. Anantasana (Infinity Pose). Lift leg.
  22. Repeat other side
  23. Ardha Dhanurasana (Half Bow Pose), repeat other side
  24. Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)
  25. Garbasana (Child's Pose)
  26. Ardha Sarvangasana (Half Shoulder Stand). Move legs in opposite circles.
  27. Halasana (Plow Pose)
  28. Supta Matsyendrasana (Supine Twist). Repeat other side
  29. Savasana

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