In my daily life, I often find that I am rushing from one thing to the next. Rushing to get to work in the morning, rushing to eat my lunch, rushing to get to an appointment. I could very easily also rush to get to my yoga practice and rush all the way through it to get on to the next thing. However, rushing is not the point of my practice, and I suspect that it also might not be the point of your practice.
What would it be like to give yourself some more space and time? What would it be like to make the choice to show up fully, moment to moment? And instead of seeding the violence of rushing into our movements, what would it be like to move at a pace that is directed and focused, yet relaxed and steady?
Apanasana, aka Knees Towards Chest Posture, is a great posture to begin with in yoga practice because it allows us an opportunity to stop the rushing. It allows us to ease into our practice and find a pace that might be a little more aligned with where we are truly at in the moment.
1. Lie down on your back with your feet on the earth and knees up towards the sky.
2. On your next out breath, draw your knees in towards your chest. Place your hands in the crease behind your knees, or place your hands on your shins and hug your knees in as close as you can.
3. Breathe as deeply as you can. Maintain for 3 to 5 breaths or longer.
4. To return to neutral, allow the feet to return to the earth.
Kidney Rock Variation
Once your knees are hugged in towards your chest, you can rock side to side, left to right. This massages the kidneys and the low back area.
– soothes lower back
– aids releasing of gas
– stimulates peristalsis in intestines which can help relieve constipation
– opens hips
– massages organs
Contraindications: Knee or low back injury
– If your knees feel sensitive, place your hands in the crease behind your knees or on the back of your thighs and pull the knees very gently towards the chest.
– If your low back area feels sensitive, lie on a folded blanket or other padding.