Posts In: vata

It can be really lovely to take time to focus your practice on seated twists, such as Marichyasana III.

Marichyasana III, the sages twist, is a beautiful shape to focus on creating a stable, grounded base. By grounding through the points of your body touching the earth, you’ll be able to focus on the internal lifting and rotation of your spine, starting from your navel and working all the way up to the top of your head.

The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali tell us “sthira sukham asanam” – steady and comfortable should be the posture.

In this twist, you can explore the interplay of these qualities of sthira (steadiness) and sukha (ease) – finding stability through your base, connected to the earth, so there can be ease and freedom in your movement and breathing. Your breath helping to release tension in your body so you can settle deeper into the stillness of your practice ❤️

Malasana is one of those poses that can communicate so much about what’s going on in your body. We all have different body proportions, mobility, areas of tension, strengths and challenges and these all play a big role in how you feel and look in this posture.

In English we call Malasana garland pose or yogi squat and yes it’s a get-your-knees-wide, bottom-close-to-the-ground squat 😊 Unless squatting is a daily part of life (which for most of us it isn’t!), Malasana can feel a little awkward and clunky. It’s important in this asana to pay attention to bringing fluidity to the ankles, knees and hips so you can find your most comfortable, stable Malasana.

And this might mean your feet are facing the sky! Try exploring Malasana as both a standing, grounded asana (with prop options to support your body) and a supine, fire building core asana.

Being the Vata season of autumn, practice should continue with the qualities of nurturing and centering but also warming, staying with the focus of activating your parasympathetic nervous system so you feel tranquil and balanced after practice.

Twists are an important part of our personal practice, and there’s rarely a class we teach where there isn’t some kind of twisting asana included.

Standing, seated or lying down, twists are amazing for spinal health and feel so good too 🌟

Building stability and flexibility in your spine, twists are also super helpful for stretching and lengthening your spine, helping to keep your back happy and healthy 😊

The breath is an important focus as you move in and out of twists and focusing on the exhale while moving helps to stimulate your parasympathetic nervous system (the part of your being responsible for rest and digest).

And it’s something important to consider adding in to your own practice! Playing around with different variations of lunge twists to enliven your spine, creating an inner experience that is calming, grounding and centering.

Can you feel the shift? The days are getting shorter and autumn’s cool embrace is slowly coming into our nights 😊

In Ayurveda, autumn is known as a Vata dominant season, bringing dryness, wind and subtle changes as we transition from summer’s fiery days to winter’s chill.

Honour this beautiful time of change by infusing your practice with grounding, nourishment, steadiness and warmth. And a perfect asana to weave these qualities into practice with is Parsvottanasana – pyramid pose.

The invitation in this asana is to focus on grounding through the feet, creating steadiness and stability. Allowing your deep belly breathing to regulate and soothe your nervous system, creating calmness in body and mind.

Nurturing your inner balance with movement, breath and eventually, stillness 💕

It’s important to honour the external and internal shifts as we move from season to season, and coming up on 20 March is the Autumn Equinox, one of two moments in the year where day and night are equal. A balanced moment in time as we begin our journey into autumn 🍁

Ayurveda attributes certain qualities to everything that we share our planet with, and autumn is seen as dry, rough, windy, erratic, cool and subtle.

There’s the variable weather, some hot days still sneaking in as our environment gradually begins to cool down. The wind can feel a little chilly, especially at night and you may begin to notice nature’s delicate changes ☀️

To counteract these qualities of vata, it’s important to draw in the balancing qualities to create stability – warmth, grounding, nourishment, heartfelt relationships and a sense of routine.

Balancing vata means connecting with deep, restful forward bends, and a beautiful asana to introduce into your practice this season is Prasarita Padottanasana (Wide Legged Forward Bend).

Slowing down the breath to soothe the nervous system and focusing on stillness, stability and support ❤️

Have you noticed it yet? The cooler nights and not-so-hot days as you into autumn 🍁 For us in Perth, it’s not the golden colours of other parts of the world (where you might be!), but it’s our unique way of experiencing the seasonal shift.

Speaking of shifts, have you heard of the astronomical autumn equinox? It’s that special moment when day and night are perfectly balanced, and it happens around 20 March in the Southern Hemisphere each year. The autumn equinox is a wonderful opportunity to encourage the idea of balance into your yoga practice too.

To honour the transition from summer to autumn, from Pitta to Vata season, start by exploring some fun balance asanas in your practice. Poses like Vrksasana (Tree Pose), which requires a strong connection to the earth while reaching for the sky. Just like a tree, you’ll be finding stability and steadiness through your grounded foot, while letting your upper body be fluid and supple.

As you step onto your mat in this transitional season, consider setting an intention to cultivate calmness, steadiness, and focus in your body, mind, and spirit. These are all wonderful benefits that your practice can bring during this time of change, and the qualities that we look to cultivate throughout Vata season.