Spring is a time of new beginnings when we feel the vibrant surge of new growth amongst the plants and emergence of new little birds and animals. The bees and butterflies dart from blossom to blossom drawing up the bountiful nectar, pollinating plants as they go. You can almost feel the energy in the air.
After a long cold winter everything is on the move again. If you have been struggling to maintain your yoga practice during the winter now is the time to move forward with renewed vigour and commitment with a few of these simple practices.
One of the most invigorating practices is the practice of salute to the sun or Surya Namaskara. This practice of 12 postures performed dynamically is designed to stimulate the sympathetic nervous system and the energy channel known as Pingala. This energy channel corresponds to the left hemisphere of the brain and is said to be concerned with masculine aspects of the self. It provides an antidote to lethargy, generating heat and burning up toxins in the body. You can begin with 3 rounds and build up 10 or more. Be sure to lie in Shavasana for a good 5 minutes on completion of your rounds to allow the parasympathetic nervous system to kick in and maintain homeostasis.
Spring also heralds a time of hay fever for those people who are susceptible and the yogic cleansing practice known as Neti is a great boon for sufferers. Neti practice involves using a small pot (known as a neti pot) filled with warm slightly salty water to cleanse the nasal passages…this removes trapped pollen and dust from the nasal passages and results in an amazing sensation of clarity. From a yogic perspective the practice also awakens ajna chakra at the eyebrow centre..allowing you to tap into the energy at this centre.
If the sun is shining, grab your props and head outdoors. Practicing your yoga outdoors can be a good way to ground yourself and reconnect to the rising energy of season, even if all you do is take your shoes off for a bit and feel the grass underneath your feet. It helps you to be present and get out of that headspace that we often get stuck in. Nature has a way of soothing the soul and inspiring a feeling of gratitude.