Let’s be real. How many of us want to do a yoga pose because it looks cool or pretty or Instagrammable?
And how many of us want to do a pose because it’s got great mental or physical benefits?
I’ve spent years belonging to the former camp. I’d look at photos of people doing these incredible poses and think ‘wow when would I ever be able to do that??’
I also remember how, a few years ago, I asked a friend if they could do the wheel pose and when they nonchalantly nodded, I felt so incompetent. Why couldn’t I do the wheel pose?!
Now in YTT, we are constantly reminded of how unique our bodies are and how certain poses may not be best suited for our bodies. For example, I now know that my lower back muscles are shortened and so backbends such as (ironically) the wheel pose may not be ideal for me.
Which then got me thinking about the fact that every single time I’ve done Wheel, I’ve never felt comfortable and have always left the studio with a slight twinge in my lower back. Every time I’d lower myself back to the ground from Wheel, I’d feel an intense sense of relief that it was finally over. It was always thoroughly unenjoyable.
Strange, isn’t it? Especially now that I know that asana means ‘easy and comfortable pose’.
Jessica once asked us, ‘Why are you doing this pose? Is it for your ego? Is it then worth it?’ I can safely say that it isn’t worth it. Follow the limits of your body and let your love for yoga breathe and flourish without any unnecessary and potentially harmful expectations.