Tips for The Yoga of Spring
Fall and spring are always challenging energetically because they are transitional seasons when we are experiencing a shift in the flow and focus of our energetic systems.
In the fall our vital energy moves inwards from the peripheral body to the belly, pelvis, and kidneys. In the spring our vital energy begins the journey back out from the core of the body to the periphery.
We can find ourselves out of balance very easily in the transitional seasons. In the spring, common imbalances are insomnia, emotional agitation, and lack of clarity and focus. Gummed up energy channels need to be cleared out from the winter to allow vital energy to move freely back into the body and help restore balance.
The main watchwords for balancing energy in the spring are:
1. Movement- moves vital energy through your life, body, and mind.
2. Expansion- lets vital energy expand through your life, body, and mind.
3. Challenge- focuses the expanding vital energy like a waterslide focusing a torrent of water.
4. Novelty- allows vital energy to expand beyond previous limits and nourish growth in your life, body, and mind. Kind of like digging out new irrigation trenches for water to nourish new land.
Here's a list of some of my favorite spring lifestyle changes that really help.
1. Work on a new yoga pose. Our connective tissue begins to loosen considerably in the warmer weather. This time of year is ideal for learning new poses or deepening poses you already do. I have been working on getting my straddle split lower to the floor over the last few weeks. It's slow going work, but feels wonderful and balancing.
2. Do vigorous exercise twice a week. As our vital energy moves outwards in the spring it craves physical expression. Springtime is a wonderful time to get back to the gym or to get back to outdoor activities like rowing or biking. This is particularly important if you are working with common imbalances this time of year such as insomnia and emotional agitation. I get back to my gym routine in the spring, amp up my practice a bit, and also try to walk outside when I can. It feels wonderful but be careful not to go nuts. Over exercising can deplete your vital energy very quickly. You always want to feel balanced and grounded after movement, not depleted and worn out.
3. Clean out your house. The outflow of vital energy in the spring makes a good time to move out clutter from our homes. Clutter is an outward representation of stagnated energy. When we clear clutter, we allow vital energy to move with greater ease through our experience. Donate or throw out anything you no longer need. You will feel much better!
4. Clear out your life. So if vital energy is present in all of our experience, then it certainly is present in our interactions and in our minds. This time of year is ideal for clearing your life of unnecessary stress. Look at ways you can release old grudges and hurts, toxic or energy-draining relationships, and old limiting beliefs. I have been working on old feelings of unworthiness that have been limiting many aspects of my life for a long time. As these feelings clear out, I feel lighter and have a great sense of possibility because the vital energy stagnated in those beliefs is allowed to clear.
5.Teachers, teach more back bends! Spring is back bend season. The expansiveness of back bends helps to flush vital energy through the body and clear stagnation from the energy meridians to allow easier flow of vital energy.
Clean it out and move it around my friends and enjoy! Happy April!