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How Yoga Unlocks Emotions: Camel Pose, Then Crying?

kira86 于2011-03-01发布 l 已有人浏览
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It happened near the start of my yoga practice a couple of years ago, though I remember it like it w

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It happened near the start of my yoga practice a couple of years ago, though I remember it like it was yesterday. I was flowing from one asana to the next in a series of progressions that led me to that fateful pose: pigeon. As I tucked my lower leg under me and bent forward, I felt my previously steady breath catch in the back of my throat. The tightness of my hip flexors took me by surprise—as did the tightness in my chest as a wave of emotions suddenly welled up inside me. It took me back to my days of tae kwon do, when my instructor would push my bent knee against my chest and I’d think I was going to start crying right then and there.

The more I’ve looked into it, though, the more I’ve found that the intense emotions I experience during yoga are quite common. In fact, certain poses are well known to release pent-up anger, sadness, frustration, and so forth.

Mind and Body as One
Though a sudden onset of emotions during a routine yoga session takes many practitioners by surprise, it’s really an important part of the discipline. That’s because there’s no differentiation between the mind, the body, and human emotions within yoga. They’re all connected, and, as such, they all affect each other. Yogis will tell you that when something weighs you down mentally, it’ll likely weigh you down physically, too. And that remains true whether you follow yoga’s tenets or not. For example, severe stress has a demonstrated effect on heart health, but within yoga specifically, certain body parts are believed to carry different types of emotions. As Sarah Powers wrote in the book Insight Yoga, “We may experience disappointment in a tight hip or fear as we settle into a long-held backbend. The longer we practice, the more we notice how varied our feelings are, how we can feel agitation one minute and elation the next, exuberance followed by despair.”

Poses that tap into tension in the hips, chest, and back seem to prompt emotional releases most often during yoga sessions. Frustration and anger could manifest in spinal tension, heartbreak and depression could linger in the chest, and emotional pain from the past could lie dormant in the hip flexors. These moves can help you confront such unresolved issues.

Poses That Target the Hips
Pigeon Pose: The positioning for this pose varies depending on how advanced you are in your practice. But even if you opt for the beginner’s asana, you’ll definitely feel pressure in your hips and groin.

Happy Baby Pose: This one might feel a little silly at first, but it can work wonders for bouts of exhaustion and anxiety.

Extended Triangle Pose: The farther you extend your torso to the right and stretch your arms, the more you challenge your hips to let go of tension.

Poses That Target the Chest
Camel Pose: Because you make your heart so open (and vulnerable) in this pose, it often leads to dramatic emotional displays, from giggling to sobbing.

Upward-Facing Dog: Remember to breathe deeply and evenly through this surprisingly challenging pose. It can help stretch the hips, too.

Bridge Pose: This pose is a gentler way to release emotions, because you slowly ease your body into it. The chest opening isn’t quite as stark, but it still makes a difference.

Poses That Target the Spine
Seated Twist: Twisting the spine in either direction awakens your organs and abdominal muscles as well.

Big Toe Pose: Asanas that require forward bends or backbends are good at channeling and expelling tension caused by anger, jealousy, and other negatively passionate emotions.

 

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