Yoga of 12-Step Recovery Artwork
Season 1 - Episode 5

Foundation Intervention

10 min - Practice


Nikki shares a quick intervention practice to find steadiness when life feels unsteady. She applies the 12-step principle of 'keep coming back' to an exploration of Tadasana (Mountain Pose) to find connection, stability, and alignment.
What You'll Need: No props needed

About This Video

Jun 20, 2017
Hatha, Karma
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Welcome to the first of our many interventions. The interventions are really embodiments and they're embodiments of some of the phrases that you'll often hear or that we often hear in 12-step programs. The one that we're going to work with today, in this moment, is the one that you'll hear very often related to inviting people to continue to come to meetings. And what you'll hear is the phrase, keep coming back, keep coming back, right? But what is it that we're really keeping coming back to? Yes, it's a physical meeting, but how does that relate relative to the body? The way we teach this little intervention is with the yoga posture called mountain pose. It's tadasana. And here's the idea. You know, we're affected by so much stimuli all the time in any moment of our lives. Very often we are out there, way out there. My attention is on, you know, what you think about me, how I look, where I gotta go, how much I have to do. And you know, like I say, you know it's always all about me, right? All about me all the time, right? So when it's like that, my attention is out there. It's out. The invitation of yoga and particularly the invitation of tadasana is to bring our awareness inside, right? To interiorize ourselves for a moment. And mountain pose helps to bring us just to that, to that interiorization for a moment. So when my attention's out there, you know, I'm kind of likely to be like this, or I'm like this, or some way that I'm not really embodied. Mountain pose invites me to that embodiment. So the very first thing we do in mountain pose, again, is find that foundation. So we connect in with Mother Earth beneath us and that starts through the feet. So for me, in this body, it feels more balanced to have my feet about hip bone distance apart. So I feel that sense in my feet where I'm truly connecting in with Mother Earth beneath me, the bone beneath the big toe is pressing toward the floor, the bone beneath the little toe, and right back through the center of the heel. So I really feel this sense of connection with Mother Earth. The idea is that the same energy that takes a little bitty acorn and grows it into a mighty oak tree is available for me in any moment that I choose to connect in on it. So it's this conscious connection with this energy that holds the earth itself, that's available for me to bring me a sense of foundation, to bring me a sense of steadiness, right? And then in my whole lower body, we do what we call hug the energy in. So I'm receiving that energy from Mother Earth. You hug the energy in, muscle hugs toward bone, the tailbone roots toward the floor, the side body becomes long, the head of the arm bone comes back so that the heart is open and the back is protected. Both things are true. The chin is parallel to the earth and the crown of the head. The area that was a soft spot when you were a baby opens like the blossom of the beautiful flowers it reaches toward the Sun. So as I feel this connection, this energy in my body, right, this is what I can keep coming back to. So when I'm in the grocery store and you know I'm just a little bit pissed off because things aren't going my way, the line's not moving as fast as I think it should move or you know things just aren't going the way that I think they should go. I can keep coming back. I can keep coming back to this sense and this feeling in my body. There is a sense a feeling to mountain poles in my body and I can keep coming back to that in any moment that I choose to bring a sense of alignment, to bring a sense of balance, to bring a sense of stabilization when life seems a little bit unsteady. So let's have a little experience of this in our bodies. So we're going to find that connection, the mountain pose connection, that sense of standing like a mountain and feel what that feels like in your body. So again it starts with our feet. So feel your feet connecting in with Mother Earth beneath you. Now make the distance between your feet what feels best for you in your body. For some it may be the sides of the big toes gently touching right. Wherever you are the outer edges of the feet are parallel with the outer edges of the mat. Feel that sense of balance and connection in your bodies. For some if you're like me it might be with your feet about hip bone distance apart. Feel the bone beneath the big toe, the bone beneath the baby toe and right back through the center of that heel. Press into the earth, connecting in with Mother Earth. You might hear lift your toes. Notice how that lifts the arches in your feet. Arches are very important, they mirror our low back. So feel that sense. You might even spurt your toes as far apart as you can, especially the baby toe. And then very lightly let your toes place back down on the floor on the mat. Come just a little bit more toward the outer edge of the feet. You'll feel your inner arches lift. Now in your whole lower body again just hug the energy in.

This is where muscle hugs toward bone. Where we feel this sense of reclamation. The sense of reclamation of ourselves. Your tailbone roots toward the earth. When that happens your lower abdominal muscles engage. Your side body's long. Your heart is open and the back is protected. Both things are true. The chin is parallel to the earth and the crown of the head. The area that was a soft spot reaches up to receive from all that's above. Now just take a moment and feel this sense in your body. Take a moment and feel the sense-sateness of standing like a mountain. I love when I think about how the mountain doesn't care, right? It doesn't care what the weather is. It doesn't care what you think about it, right? It just stands tall and just is very solid in being what it is. A mountain. Solid in its true self. Being a mountain. Feel that in your body and now let it go. Let it go. Good. And now feel the sense of what it feels like when I'm not standing in myself. You'll notice what happens with alignment. One hip slides to one side. There's a misalignment that occurs when I'm not standing and who it is that I really am. So again feel this sense. Find your mountain. Find your mountain. Be in your mouth. Connect in with Mother Earth. So this is what it means to keep coming back. This is the embodiment of what it means to keep coming back. Feel the sense in your body and know that any time it's available, it's always there. Doesn't cost anything. All I need do is pause and keep coming back. Thank you so much.


1 person likes this.
Sweet teaching, palms joined in gratitude.
1 person likes this.
Love love!!! πŸ™πŸ™πŸ™β€οΈ

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