You know that feeling you get when you try something new and it’s incredibly exciting, and maybe even challenging, but starts to become easier the more you do it?
Yea, you know what I’m talking about and had to have experienced it at some point in your life. You begin to see progress and want to keep doing whatever it is you are now doing because you are getting good at this new skill, and on top of that, for some reason, it makes you feel really great.
That’s one of the reasons I continue to practice Adamantine® Yoga every day…on the chance that I might actually stick Handstand Scorpion for a full 5 breaths without an assist, or that my jump-throughs will become effortless effort. I get glimpses of these things every time I practice, but haven’t yet realized their full potential. It’s fun & even thrilling to see what I am capable of each day.
This past week at GSP, I was introduced to 2 new skills/postures that I get to incorporate into my Adamantine® Yoga sequence: Straight-leg Turtle and Kapotasana or Pigeon Pose. I’ll say that my experience with both of these postures over the past week has been anything but easy, but I’m getting more familiar with them and learning what it takes to realize the full expression of each of them.
The addition of these postures came at the perfect time in my practice because I was starting to feel as though I wasn’t making any progress and was beginning to overanalyze some of my most basic postures, including Downward Facing Dog. It’s almost as though my body also knew it was ready for something different and needed a change because of the muscle tensions I had been experiencing that were beginning to become regular uncomfortableness. And it has added a new element of excitement to my practice.
Since incorporating Straight-leg Turtle, my upper back/shoulder pain that I wrote about a while back is finally lessening even more than it had been after a visit to the chiropractor and 3 or 4 massages. And that’s after just 5 days of practicing this! But it certainly wasn’t graceful the first time I tried it last Friday.
And after 3 days of practicing Pigeon away from the wall, I’m brave enough to reach my hands to the floor. Backbends have always come pretty natural to me, but for some reason as I’ve grown to be an adult, dropping backward into them kind of scares me. I’m able to do it, but can feel my mind working against my physical body.
I’m telling you all of this because it’s important to remember that new skills are not easy, no matter what they are. Your mind is creating new pathways that have never been there before and sometimes it takes time to overcome fears and physical challenges. Your mind has to learn how to become the most effective and efficient at that new skill, just like when a toddler is learning to do something for the first time. And you have to have the mental discipline to continue to practice that skill and not just give up, otherwise that pathway is lost.
What would happen if all toddlers just gave up at trying to walk?
The idea behind practicing any skill is that it becomes effortless effort, right? The 20 postures in the Adamantine® Yoga sequence ultimately map human movement by moving your joints through their full range of motion, so if you can do each of them, there’s really nothing you wouldn’t be able to do. And by learning these new skills or postures, imagine how powerful and sharp your mind your mind would be. Precisely why I love Admantine® Yoga.