In this week’s yoga classes we will focus on TWISTS.  Whenever I feel bloated or sluggish I always feel like doing twisting poses which are wonderful for stimulating the digestive system and the internal organs and keeping the spine flexible and healthy.

It is so helpful to begin any twist by moving from within around the central axis of the spine (try to get a sense of initiating the movement in your organs); avoid over-using your limbs and external surfaces to pull you into a twisting position.  The breath can help: in seated and standing twists focus on lengthening up through the spine on the inhale and releasing your body round into the twist from deep within on the exhale.  Once in the twist try to overcome tension by creating internal space on the inhale, breathing into the spaces where you feel excessive holding and releasing this tension on the exhale. When the twist moves you from within it may become deeply calming for the mind and deeply nourishing for the body.

This idea of moving from within rather than being driven by external forces makes me think of the cake that I nearly bought to go with my cup of coffee this morning…my external, pre-patterned response when I saw the yummy slice of cake on the counter was that I wanted to eat it, however when I paused, took a breath and thought about it more deeply I realised that I wasn’t actually hungry and didn’t really need anything to eat.  This made me realise how helpful it can be to pause, breathe and drop down inside, to allow myself to move from a deeper place rather than allow myself to be driven by a more ‘external’ or superficial response.  Sorry, I seem to have strayed from the subject of twists – somehow it felt relevant!