Asana Studies Artwork
Season 1 - Episode 10

Spiraling and Shaping

30 min - Practice
30 likes
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Description

Weaving all the explored alignments of Season One of Asana Studies, Chris guides us through a complete sequence of standing postures, seated twists, and hip openers. His cadence creates a powerful and trance-like rhythm inside that allows access to new dimensions of the body.
What You'll Need: Mat, Strap, Block

About This Video

May 30, 2015
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Transcript

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Now we're going to do a sequence where we bring into play various parts of what we've been covering in these last few sessions. Start in (foreign language) Just tuning in. Letting the body take the breath that it needs. Just enough energy to keep the eyes lifted even though the eyelids are closed. As if you're looking into the eyes of someone who's the same height as yourself and just enough energy to keep yourself standing.

Allow the weight to be in the heels and feel the breath moving. As you let the body take the breath that it needs just notice what you notice, tuning in, notice what is there. Let's keep the eyes closed, begin shaping the feet with the toes up and spread them wide, lots of energy in the feet. The energy goes down the back of the legs through the heels, into the floor, standing upright away from the floor. Use the heels and the floor and the weight you feel in the heels and the floor and move the top of the thigh bones, roll the buttocks back to the wall behind you and scruff the heels apart, lift the outer arches and spin the knees out.

Exhale on the wave of the inhalation, take the arms up, head back to look up, exhale, hands through. (foreign language) Hang the head, exhale. Bend the knees and feel the head tail drop as if you're doing the standing child's pose, close the eyes, the back of the hands on the floor, lift the toes up, shape the feet, scruff the heels, lift the outer arches and spin the knees out. So with the eyes closed this becomes a bit of a balancing pose. Notice if you can feel the connection between the heels and the sits bones.

Press the heels, lift the sit bones, bring the head back, fingertips on the floor sitting deep. (foreign language) Interlace the fingers, press the palms, stretch way up out of the waist. Using the energy down the backs of the legs through the heels to the floor to create an upward, spatial push lengthening the waist. Change interlacing of the fingers and again, press the heels in the floor, stretching up. All aspects of the hand are active, all of the fingertips coming back towards you lengthening the waist.

Be aware of the shaping that's happening with the top of the thighs, internally rotate the hip points (mumbles) deepening the circum wide and the tail dropping, the heart opening. Step to horse dance, feel the weight spanning. Pitching forward (mumbles), fingertips, exhale, head tail, drop, knuckle drag, fingertips on the floor, spider pose. Take the right thumb in the hip crease, take the left heel left wall, spin the right leg out, the knee, the heel and the thigh bone coming into side angle pose, fingertips on the floor. Bend the back leg, horse stance with the back leg to the thigh spinning open and then again ungee, where to pose.

Pitching forward, fold on the angle, come back to center, spider pose, left thumb in hip crease, take the right heel to the right wall, spin the left thigh bone out, the toe and the knee coming into the side angle pose. Fingertips on the floor. Bend the back leg, horse stance. (mumbles) too. Pitching forward, forward horse stance, come back to center, use the heels on the floor, move the thigh bones down to the wall below you, hold the head back, drop the spine, bend the knees, horse stance, press the heels, act like (mumbles) leg, lift the sit bones, head back, firm the hands, step the left leg, right leg.

(foreign language) Fingertips, sitting over to the right side of the legs. Take the right hand up, stretching up, pressing the palm overhead, way out of the waist, softening the groins, come back to center. (foreign language) Sit over to the left side. Hands wide, fingers wide, halo, I call this halo mudra, press the palms overhead, stretching up, softening the groin, come back to center. Halo mudra with the right hand, take the thumb and the middle finger of the left hand around the wrist and press the right hand overhead, fingertips of the right hand to the wall at your left, exhale, sit over to the right side.

Take the right knee out a bit, sync the left side of the pelvis, exhale, turn the head to the left side, side bend way over, look to the floor outside the left ankle, push the right arm over left side, exhale, release the right waist, top of thighs internally rotate, hip points now are groin deepen, sacrum widens, tail drops, heart opens. As you inhale, sync the left side of the pelvis over the floor, tall sit. Anjali mudra (foreign language). Hand to scapula, left hand above the right thigh, little finger and ring finger of the left hand drawing the left scapula firm, upward facing dog, the spiral in the right hand goes from the hand to the wrist to the forearm to the elbow, to the upper arm, shoulder joint, shoulder girdle. Looking around, with your left eye gaze towards the right.

Be aware of the connection between the hand and the scapula. The softening of the groins and the pelvic shaping affecting the movement in the spine. Anjali mudra. On the exhalation, sync the left side of the pelvis back to the floor to come back to the center. Then relax the elbows as you come back to center and walk the knees back to (foreign language).

Halo mudra with the left hand. The middle finger and the thumb of the right hand around the left wrist, press the left hand overhead, keep the shape strong of the left hand, a lot of spatial intent from the upward press on the exhalation, sit over to the left side. Take your left knee out to the left. Soften the groins, push reach, a tall sit. On the exhalation turn your head to the right.

On the other exhalation, don't collapse it, rather go way out there, way, way, look to the floor outside the right ankle. Top of thighs internally rotate hip points, narrow groins deepen, sacrum widens tail drop, heart opens. Inhale as you sink the right side of the pelvis towards the floor, tall sit. Hands to anjali mudra, (foreign language). The right hand above the left knee on the lower thigh, the lower left thigh, use the hand scapula of the right little finger, ring finger to connect the scapula, draw the scapula firm into the back ribs and from the left hand the spiral goes to the hand, like upward facing dog to the wrist to the forearm to the elbow to the upper arm, shoulder joint, shoulder girdle, exhale, soften the groins, rotate.

Gaze softly, steadily and gently with the right eye to the wall, toward your left, soften the groins, feel the pelvic shaping, enhancing groin movement and the spine. Hands in namaste on the exhalation sync the right side of the pelvis back to the floor to come back to the center. On the transition back to center relax the elbows and shoulders and just do it in the hips. Fingertips on the floor, cross the ankles, supasinah. (foreign language) Ease the hands on the floor, the long fingers pointing to the side walls and slightly back from the hands, and the spiral goes in the hand to the wrist to the forearm to the elbow to the upper arm to the shoulder joint to the shoulder growl, draw the scapula down the back and sit very firmly.

Bring the legs up, (foreign language). Shape the feet, press the heels into each other, right foot is a floor for the left foot, the left foot is a floor for the right foot. Firm the hands and firm the hand's scapula shape change the shoulders, on the exhalation, belly hollow. Extend the legs (foreign language). Cross the ankles, sukhasana.

Come to the knees, hands and knees. Exhale, droop, keep the hands firm on the floor, firm the hands and firm the hands, the thumb side of the palm firmly to the floor, take the spiral from the hand to the wrist to the forearm to the elbow to the upper arm, shoulder joint, shoulder girdle, hover, scruff the hands, hover, scruff the hands overhead, drive the scapula down the back shifting the weight down, pop the pelvis back. Exhale, (mumbles), head back looking up. (foreign language) Bring the right knee forward and outside of the right wrist, right ankle up, sitting down. Feel that the right leg is behind where it originates on the right side of the pelvis.

Place your left hand in front of your right ankle, take the right thumb in the hip crease, exhale, lay down, feel the groin softening. Use your left shin on the floor to keep the pelvis from collapsing, keeping the pelvis square and use the right thumb in the hip crease to help with that. Firm the right shin to the floor, bring the head back to look up, firm the right shin to the floor, bring the upper back back, place the hands, downward dog. Inhale, head back looking up, exhale (foreign language). Bring your left knee up outside of the left wrist, the left ankle forward, thumb in the hip crease, feel that your right leg is behind where it originates in that side of the pelvis.

Look under and see. Exhale, groins deepen, sacrum widens, tail drop, heart opens, exhale, laying down. Firm the left shin into the floor, on the wave of the inhalation head back to look up. Firm the left shin into the floor and bring the upper back back, place the hands, curl the back toes, exhale, downward dog. Top of the feet, hover (foreign language), lay flat.

Firm the hands, drive the scapula down the back, press to hands and knees, curl the toes, swivel the knees and pelvis to the left side, place your pelvis in the center of your mat, the right side of the pelvis, bring the elbows to the floor, sphinx pose. Extend the left leg down to the base of your mat below you and the right leg to the wall at your left, toward your left side, feel that your right leg is below you, both legs are in dandasana, the staff pose, shaping the feet, soften the groins, head back to look up, scruff the elbows apart, drag the elbows down, hover. Keep the legs, bring the hands, bring the legs in, curl your left toe, hands and knees. Curl your toes, hover, swivel your knees and pelvis to the wall at your right, lower the left side of the pelvis on the center of your mat, bring your elbows to the floor for a sphinx pose. Extend your right leg down to the base of your mat and your left leg to the wall at your right side towards your right side.

Wake the feet up, shake the feet, hover, feel the groin softening. Top of the thighs internally rotate hip points, narrow groin deepens, sacrum widens, tail drops, heart opens, head comes back to look up. Letting the body breathe, scruffing the elbows apart, dragging them down towards your pelvis, pressing the elbow, the forearm, foot in the floor, hover. Keep the legs, bring the right hand to the floor, the left hand, bring the knees in, curl the right toe, exhale, come back to hands and knees, firm the hands, lower the right side of the pelvis to the floor, leave your left hand firm, exhale, reach under like you're going to hug yourself, tuck and roll onto the back, come to the center of the mat. Lying on the back allow the body weight to settle, take care that when you're lying on your back, allow the spine to have its natural curves, resist the temptation to harden the belly and press the lower spine into the floor.

Extend the legs down one at a time, make fists, point the knuckles to the ceiling shaping the feet, firm the elbows onto the floor beside you, scruff the elbows apart, bring the shoulders up a little bit and the elbows up a little bit towards your ears and firm the elbows back in the floor and now scruff the elbows down to lengthen the waist. (foreign language) Shaping the feet, so what we're doing here is lying on the floor doing tadasana, active tadasana, so the energy's going down the back of the legs through the heels towards the wall below you, spread the toes wide and firm the back of the heels into the floor to move the top of the thigh bones below the buttocks back into the floor. Scruff the heels apart from the skin at the back of the heel on the floor. Lift the outer archings, slightly spin the knees out as the heels scruff apart. The heel skin sticks and the heel bones within the heel skin scruff apart from each other waking the legs up, exhale, soften the groin.

You want to have the legs strong and alive and vibrant with the pelvis very fluid, receptive. Take your strap, on the exhalation, press the left leg towards the heel, towards the wall below you on an exhalation with that, when the belly hollows like you're stepping up a high step, bring your knee up to the chest, the right knee, take the strap around the front of the right heel. On the wave of the exhalation from the action of the left leg below you, pressing left heel back to the floor behind you, extend the right leg. Softening the groins, continually shaping the feet, the fuel to define the lines of energy in the legs, very clear and the groin soft, close the eyes and feel the relationship, take care that with the hands on the strap that you don't just tug on the spatial working leg, the right leg, rather but create some connectivity between the hands and the strap around the heel into the scapula by way of the arms, lower the leg down. Go right to, can return directly to supta, that means lying face up, supine, tadasana, active.

Exhale, push the right heel towards the wall below you like you're stepping up a long step, bring the left knee up to the chest and take the strap around the front of the left heel and from the action of the right leg below you pushing the right heel towards the wall below you and pressing the back of the right heel back into the floor down there below you, extend the left leg, exhale, soften the groins. Lower the leg down, again make fists, your knuckles directed at the ceiling in front of you, resist taking them down or up but toward the ceiling. Firm the elbows and shoulders up a little bit towards your ears and firm the elbows there into the floor and then scruff the elbow bones down as the elbow skin sticks, to lengthen the waist, lengthen the spine, arms out to the side, palms face the ceiling, exhale, let the body breathe, let the body breathe, just let the body take the breaths it needs. For the first few moments of your savasana notice, pay attention to, see, feel, hear, sense the wave or the movement of your breath, the wave of the in-breath and the wave of the out-breath. Just as the wave of the out-breath, you're letting the breath leave, you're surrendering your breath, surrender the body weight into the floor as well.

Practice letting go, just let go. Now stay in savasana as long as you would like to. When you come out be very conscious of the wave of the breath and catch the wave of the breath, the shape change that happens with the wave of the breath on the exhalation, when the belly hollows, the thurmin softens and the throat softens, bend one leg up, be aware of the shape change, the movement of the torso that happens with the waves of the breath and on the wave of the exhalation another breath when the belly hollows and the throat softens and the sternum softens, bring your second leg up, feet flat on the floor, knees pointing to the ceiling. Then on another exhalation roll to the side. Spend as much time on your side as you would like continuing to allow the qualities of savasana, the letting go that happens with the movement of the breath, the breath leaving the body.

Continue to let the weight go if you do so. When you sit up, use your left hand firm on the floor, spread the fingers out and again on the exhalation. If you're on the right side, use your left hand. If you're on the left side, use your right hand, but the hand that's furthest from the floor, put it in front of the chest, on the exhalation push the floor away, let the legs be passive, use the strength of your arm and use your other arm as it becomes available, head hanging. So you come out of the pose gently.

Thank you.

Comments

2 people like this.
Chris can dial me in immediately the voice, the cues, the rhythm, the simplicity it all works. Thank-you Chris!
Hi Karen, Thank you...I'm happy to hear that it works for you!
3 people like this.
I can't understand what you are saying, you mumble. I am moderately deaf in one ear and to have to listen to you when my eyes are closed, it is virtually impossible to understand you.
Dearest Lindy, thank you so much for being here and your feedback. If you haven't already, I suggest watching some of Chris's earlier episodes in the Season where he explains all the instructions in high detail. Then, in this practice, he allows the instructions to be in a rhythmic dance like cadence. xokira
Hi Lindy, Thanks, I really appreciate your feedback. Kira's suggestion of how to approach it is on point (thanks Kira). However I will be mindful of your input the next time we film...there's always room for growth.

In the meantime if you have any questions please let me know.
Nan
1 person likes this.
I understand Lindy's concern. I have a mild to moderate hearing loss and also had a hard time following what Chris was saying. It's less a matter of having done the earlier episodes and more a matter of not being able to understand most of what he's saying because the enunciation isn't clear. It's very hard to get into the yoga state of mind when you're tense from trying to understand what's being said/what you're supposed to do! It happens with some voices, and unfortunately for me and Lindy, it happens for us with Chris's voice. Luckily there are many other sessions on the site.
Hi Nan, Thank you so much for your feedback. I totally understand the frustration with the instructions being insufficiently enunciated to clearly understand, and the tension that can cause.

It's funny because when I teach in person I often enunciate and project my voice so much that I'm mindful to monitor my volume to avoid being too loud. On the next go round I will definitely speak much more clearly.

I'm the meantime please let me know if you would like me to clarify any of it. Thanks again
2 people like this.
I was thrilled to find Chris listed as a YogaAnytime teacher, because I learned so much from him "back in the day" (14+ years ago!) before I was a yoga teacher. I've carried some of his language and moves with me over the years, as an instructor.... and now I get to receive even more from him. Thanks, Chris!
Hi Erica, I apologize for my slow response; I was away from the site for a while. Thanks for stopping through! It’s always nice to see a former student, and it’s great that you’re teaching!
Love your clarity and unusual moments i.e. Horse stance leading out of vira 2. Peace
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