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Season 1 - Episode 9

Saturn: Change Perspective

25 min - Practice


Looking at our challenges with a different perspective helps us see the lessons they offer. Ali leads a dynamic class to change our perspective and help us call on the energy of the Planet of Lessons. We move through standing sequences to open the body, strengthen the core, and sharpen our focus in preparation for Headstand. You will feel centered, balanced, and inspired.

Please see the attached pdf for a breakdown of the planetary aspects.

What You'll Need: No props needed


Read Full Transcript

Namaste, welcome. This will be our Saturn class. Saturn has been called the planet of lessons. Sometimes there are those times in life where you feel like you're going through a challenge, and you're going through a challenge, and you're going through a challenge, and you're not seeing the lesson there. Saturn is the energy to call in when you're up against something, and you just kind of keep butting your head up against the same situation over and over and over again.

Call on Saturn, bring in that wisdom, and let's be teachable together. All right, mudra, mudra of the inner self. So press all of the fingers together. Take your thumbs and line them up, pressing the outer edges of your thumbs together, and then make a little triangle with your hands, and bring the thumbs right into the center of the triangle. So your hands almost form two sides of a diamond.

Look through it. Not easy to see through. That's part of it. And then slide it down right in front of your throat. Mudra of the inner self.

The mudra to call in Saturn is Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha, 12 times. Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shan Shanacharya Namaha Om Shanshanacharya Namaha. Om Shanshanacharya Namaha. Om. Let your head bow in slightly towards your hands.

May we come to our practice with the beginner's mind. You can release your mudra, flutter your eyes open if they're closed. And we're going to meet up in a child's pose. So sink your hips back towards your heels. Reach your arms out long in front of you.

And just let your head drop down. Take a few breaths into the back waist. Let yourself be low and connected here. And then walk your hands together and bring them into a prayer out in front of you. And you might notice that all of a sudden the feeling of the pose changes.

It might feel more devotional, more reverent, and just how it feels to you. And then take the prayer and fold it behind your head. Walk your elbows forward. And pull the hips back a little bit more. And see if you can squeeze the forearm and the bicep together so that the bend of the elbows becomes a little bit sharper.

And let the armpits soften down here. Create a little space in the armpit chest. Reach your arms back out long in front of you. Draw yourself forward onto hands and knees, wrists under shoulders, knees under hips. Tuck the toes under and lift your hips up.

And press back into your downward facing dog. And then any little movements that you need there. You can bend one knee and bend the other. Swinging the hips a little bit from side to side. And then take a couple breaths in your down dog.

Shake any tension out of the neck. You can flutter through the lips and release the jaw. Drop. And then stretch the right leg up. And bring your right knee towards your left elbow.

Swing your right leg back up. Breath in. Take your right knee towards your right elbow. Swing your right leg back up. Step through and come into a lunge.

And right away, let's drop the back knee, point the back toes. Send the arms up, Urdhva Hastasana with the hands. And fold the prayer behind your head. Gather your elbows in close to your ears. And lean the head back into the forearms.

And this doesn't need to be a huge back bend, right? It's early in practice. Just give yourself a moment to feel the lift and opening in the front body. Stretch the arms back up. Breath in.

Bring the hands down with your breath out. Stepping back into plank pose. Lower your right forearm and your left forearm and be in plank on your forearms. You can also put the knees down here if that's a better fit. And then go ahead, drop the hips down, and be in sphinx pose.

Pointing back through the toes, you might need to walk the elbows forward a little bit more to get the elbows underneath the shoulders. Press down into the hands so you have a lift in the chest. And then flex your left foot and bend your left knee. Look over your right shoulder. You might be able to see the left heel behind you.

Just getting a nice turning at the neck there. And then release that down. And try the other side. Bend your right knee, flex your right foot. And take a glance over the left shoulder.

Looking back towards your right heel. And release that back down. Take your hands underneath your shoulders. Cobra with your breath in. Down dog with your breath out.

Stretch your left leg up. Bring your knee towards your right elbow. Inhale it back up. Exhale, knee to left elbow. Inhale it back up.

Exhale, knee to nose and step through. Come into your lunge. Drop your back knee down, point your back toes. And reach up. High prayer above the head, look up.

And then fold it back behind your head. Elbows pull in close to the ears. Let the hips drift forward slightly and tip the head back. Get the opening in the front of the right hip. And imprint the shape of the arms.

And stretch the arms back up. Bring the hands down, step back, plank pose. Lower your left forearm and your right forearm and you're in plank on your forearms. Press the ground away. And then drop your hips down and be in your sphinx pose.

Let the lower back release a little bit. And if there's any tenderness in the lower back, give a slight lift of the abdominals to cinch at the waist and protect the lower back. Bend your right knee, flex your right foot, look over your left shoulder. Feel the back of the leg turn on, squeeze the heel in. Release.

Right over to the other side, flex your left foot, bend your left knee. Look back towards your left heel. And release. Hands by the ribs, cobra with the breath in. Down, dog, with your breath out.

And then begin to walk your hands back towards your feet. So just doing things a little bit differently today. Coming to hang over your legs at the back of your mat. You can soften the knees, give a sway. And then you can heel-toe the feet a little closer in towards each other.

Press into the base of the big toes. Lengthen the arms back, diver's pose, coming halfway up and lift your heels. Pressing into the base of the big toes. From here, utkatasana, bend the knees, anchor the heels, and reach up through your arms. And then send the hips back.

And if this is a challenging pose for you, go into the challenge. See if you can bend the knees a little bit deeper. And reach up through the side waist a little bit longer. And that opposition creates strength. Push down into the feet, come on up, urdhva hastasana.

Catch your left wrist and side bend over towards your right. And you can allow the right ear to drop towards the right bicep, getting a little more opening in the side of the neck. Inhale, back up to center. Exhale, take it right over to the other side. Using the left hand to give a little tug on the right wrist, go in deeper.

Open up the right side. Inhale your way back up. Exhale, eagle wrap your right arm underneath your left. And if eagle's not working for you, you can give yourself a hug. And then lift your right leg, garudasana.

And you can single or double wrap your right leg. And begin to fold forward, getting wide across the backs of the shoulders. And then you're going to take your right leg, and you're going to take your right leg, wide across the backs of the shoulders. And then reach for your big right toe with the first two fingers of your right hand. Left hand can come to the left hip.

Begin to stand all the way up, pressing down into your left foot. And stretch the right leg out long in front of you. Utthita hasta padangusthasana A. Plug the right shoulder back. Pull up out of the left leg. Take your left arm up.

Take your right arm up. Hold the right leg up. Reach up through the arms. And then step your right foot to meet your left diver's pose. Reach your arms back.

And lift your heels up. Coming halfway forward, extend out. Crown of the head moves away from the tailbone. Draw the shoulder blades together so the chest stays broad. Utkatasana.

Bend the knees. Hips move back. And reach up through the arms. From here, lengthening out the legs. Catch your right wrist with your left hand and side bend over towards your left.

Get some space in the right ribs. And then inhale back up. Exhale, take it right over to the other side. Right hand grabs left wrist and side bend. Inhale back up.

And on the exhale, eagle wrap. Left arm underneath the right. Inhale back up, and on the exhale, eagle wrap. Left arm underneath the right. Lifting up through the left leg.

And single or double wrap it around the right leg and begin to fold forward. If the balance is a little tippy today and you need to put the ball of the left foot down, you'll do that. Or just be in the wobbles of it. Reach for your big left toe with the first two fingers of your left hand, right hand to right hip, and begin to make your way up. Stand up and then begin to lengthen the left leg out long in front of you, kicking through the left heel.

And if the knee needs to stay bent, the knee will stay bent. Take your right arm up. Stretch your left arm up and hold your left leg up. Hold it up. And then step your left foot to meet your right.

On the inhale, reach the arms up and look up. And on the exhale, fold yourself forward. Come on down over your legs. Walk yourself out into plank, one hand at a time. From your plank, once again, lower your right forearm down and lower your left forearm down.

Plank on your forearms. Little different this time. See if you can come back up to plank, right hand and left hand. Again, you can put the knees down if you need to there. Downward facing dog.

Reach the right leg up. Bring the right knee towards the left elbow. You've been here before. Swing the right leg back up. Breath in.

Right knee to right elbow. Right leg back up. Breath in. Knee in towards your nose. Fall in triangle.

Slip the right foot underneath the left arm. Shoot it out to the side and lift the left arm up. So it's kind of like that uttita hasta. You were just in standing up. If you want to float the right leg up, you can do that.

We'll meet up in child's pose. Bring the hands down. Drop the knees. Take your child's pose. Let the breath go if you need it.

Hands can come into a prayer. Folding the prayer behind the head. Walk the elbows away. Pull the hips back. And then one more time.

Coming back onto hands and knees. Tuck the toes under. Down dog. Slide out to plank pose. Lower your left forearm.

Lower your right forearm. Plank on your forearms. And then coming back up. Left hand, right hand, regular plank, downward facing dog. Reach the left leg up.

Left knee to right elbow. Swing the left leg back up. Left knee to left elbow. Swing the left leg back up. Left knee to nose, fall in triangle.

Send the foot underneath the right arm this time. And there's different ways of doing this. I like keeping the hips a little bit more even. Draw the back hip forward. And then maybe lifting up through the left leg.

Child's pose as you get there. Drop it down. Hands can come together, can fold them behind the head, and walk the elbows away. Full breath in. Full breath out.

And then reach the arms out long. Come back onto your hands and your knees. Once again, tuck the toes under, lift the hips up, and press back to downward facing dog. From here, roll out to plank pose, and lower all the way down to your belly, stretching the tops of the feet back. Reach your arms back behind you.

You can bring the tops of the hands down to the ground. And then press the pubic bone down, roll the shoulders back, and lift up your head and your chest and your legs, and even your arms coming into shalabhasana. Squeeze the shoulder blades together. Lift through the inner edges of the legs. See if you can stay for a couple more breaths.

And then release yourself down. Make a little pillow for your head. Shake out your hips. And then we're going to do one more variation. And I learned this one in a Nyangar workshop a bunch of years ago.

Check this in. Interlace your fingers and place them behind your head. And then pull the elbows in around the ears. Lift everything up into shalabhasana again. And then try to press the back of the head into the hands and send the points of the elbows up, points of the elbows up.

And you'll feel this all the way down through the mid spine. Keep trying to get the elbows up. Elbows up, elbows up, up, up, up. And then gently release yourself down, or down, down. And you can make a little pillow for the head again.

Shake out the hips. And then taking the hands underneath the shoulders, press yourself back. And we're setting up for a headstand. So you've got some options here. Could be good to interlace the fingers coming into shasana A with the fingers interlaced.

You also might try pressing the palms together and keeping that prayer behind the head shape that we've been working with. Up to you here. If headstand is newer for you and you need to stay in the plank on the forearms, that's a great place to build the strength up for headstand and start to get used to the alignment of hips over shoulders. So let's do this. Let's all come back into that plank on the forearms.

And you can either interlace the fingers or press the palms together and begin to walk the feet forward. Check in if the elbows are not wider than the shoulders here. And keep sending the hips up, up, up, up, up. And you might stay there, or you can drop the crown of the head down, squeeze the knees in towards the chest, and begin to stretch the legs up. And once the legs are up, reach through the inner legs.

Once we're up in the shape, the work doesn't stop. Pull the inner thighs in towards each other. Press down into the forearms. And if you've got that prayer shape behind the head, even press the fingers together. And that gathering in towards the midline is actually going to be helpful for the balance.

Lengthen up through the tailbone. Fan out across the toes. And if you're newer to headstand, I'm going to encourage you to come back down after a couple of breaths. And then maybe you try it one more time. When headstand is a bit newer, it's nice to come up and down a couple of times, as opposed to staying up for too long before the neck is a little bit more used to it.

If you're still up, let's begin to come down, bending at the knees, bringing the heels towards the backs of the legs. And then do what you can to keep the hips up real high as the knees begin to lower. And the feet will land. And you can come back into your child's pose, hands in a prayer. And sometimes it's that physical expression of looking at something differently, literally changing our perspective that helps us to look at the challenge a little differently.

And maybe see the lesson. Walk your hands back underneath your shoulders. And super slow, pressing into the hands, roll yourself back up to sit. And then finding a seat once more. Let your palms rest on your thighs for a moment, being upright, head above the heart, and taking the hands back into the mudra of the inner self, outer edges of the thumbs pressed together, other four finger pads come together.

Little diamond shape. See if you can look through it. You might just notice a glimmer of light. And then slide the hands down a little bit. Om Shamsanacharya Namaha, three times.

Om Shamsanacharya Namaha, Om Shamsanacharya Namaha, Om Shamsanacharya Namaha, Om. Thank you for sharing your practice. Namaste.


Jenny S
5 people like this.
I always love that wonderful opening in child’s pose with prayer hands 🙏🏻 and it was nice to turn upside down today as well…definitely seeing things with a different perspective! Thank you for this insightful season of yoga - looking forward to more to come 🤞♓️♊️🕉
Michelle F
4 people like this.
Dear Ali,
Thank you so much for including these wonderful mudras and mantras - gosh did I wibble and wobble throughout this Saturn session - then surprised myself by staying sweetly steady in the headstand - I also noticed that by the end of the practice I could see more through the mudra - how fascinating it all is!
Have a beautiful day!loveandpeacexxx

Ali Cramer
2 people like this.
Jenny S thank you so much for your support and receptivity! Namaste ❤️🙏🏽
Ali Cramer
2 people like this.
Michelle F I wibbled and wobbled a bunch on the Mercury sequence! 🤣  we just keep going! Thank you so much for your feedback. Namaste ❤️🙏🏽
1 person likes this.
loved it - many thanks!
Sandra Židan
Thank you very much, Ali, for this great practice! It was a bit hard for me- especially the part with the head stand- I did a dolphin pose instead of it but the practice was very interesting! Kind regards! 💝
Ali Cramer
1 person likes this.
Sandra Židan dolphin pose is a great alternative, you could also do a prasarita padottanasana with a block under your head. Glad you enjoyed! 🙏🏽💙
Ali Cramer
Matthew so glad to hear it! Thank you! 💙🙏🏽
Tina Anderson
Thank you soooo much Ali. Boy. Did I need to change my perspective in Covid times here in Aotearoa New Zealand right now. My family thank you. Ill be back tomorrow. Thank you thank you thank youuu. Mucho Metta Tina A. 
Wonderful! Thanks so much.

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