11 Aug PRACTICING YOGA OUTDOORS
To do Yoga outside is such an experience! We have this opportunity in summer and it is very refreshing and regenerating. In the first years when I practiced outside, I realized that it took quite a lot of concentration. It can be very distracting: the pull of nature is overpowering and the spaces are so open as compared to being in an enclosed space.
If there are trees, there is almost always a constant fluttering of leaves. The wind stays busy ruffling them. Branches gracefully sway and each tree has a different sort of rhythm and movement. Do you think that nature is so healing because of the gradation of greens? Or is there much more involved?
Today I am standing under some umbrella pine trees. They are typically found in Tuscany. The needles under my Yoga mat become soft messengers to my feet. I wait for several minutes in Tadasana. How blessed we are to have feet as sensitive as ears which “hear” the carpet that I am standing on. Thousands of long, horizonatally flattened, dried needles underfoot put me in contact with the tender earth. It is such a special, beautiful moment. I take my time and breathe. All worries, all thoughts slowly dissolve.
Then, it becomes your moment if you are outside. If you take time to listen carefully, your body will tell you what it would love to do. You may find yourself doing any number of asanas.You may surprise yourself – or it might be just the right moment to sit and practice Pranayama. The most important thing, in this case, is to sit comfortably: perhaps in Vajrasana (sitting on your heels), simple half crossed legs, or Padmasana (the Lotus Pose), etc.
Enjoy these days. They are precious. The sun and air will strengthen you and prepare you for the coming months.