Here I want to mention a few Yoga Tricks I discovered through personal practice and found extremely useful. If some of them make sense to you, I’m more than pleased to share yoga tricks.
CLOSE YOUR EYES & SEE
Once I was practicing at night, it was dark in the room, so it didn’t make any sense to open my eyes. Since the eyes were shut, I could only perform the most basic asanas. And what I realized was that simplicity brings so much pleasure.
When we are relaxed, the energy runs smoothly throughout the body. We don’t need to put effort into getting in the desired posture. Therefore, if we choose the asanas that we can perform effortlessly, we have a better chance to gain profound meditative experiences.
Later I started doing yoga with my eyes closed regularly, not just at nighttime. And that’s what I noticed. When the energy doesn’t get dissipated through the eyes but stays in the body, you can accumulate much more energy during your practice.
The whole practice becomes meditative, not just the final Shavasana. You feel subtler energies in each pose you perform. And, of course, by the time you reach Shavasana, your mind is very calm and quiet. So, Shavasana also becomes much more profound.
If you want to try and practice with your eyes closed, you have to choose very simple asanas. It’s not easy to keep the balance when your eyes are shut, and falling down may feel disturbing. You’ll see that once you start performing asanas with your eyes closed, your concentration will increase. And with proper attention, you’ll benefit from the most accessible poses you do.
This discovery totally changed my attitude toward yoga. Before, there was a lot of emphasis on learning new things, on finding teachers that would speed up my knowledge curve, on getting into more sophisticated asanas. Now I kind of lost my impatience. I can enjoy simple things and stay in the present moment observing the flows of energy.
FINDING BALANCE – Yoga Tricks
Quite often listening to instructions on Balancing poses, I heard the phrase ‘Find a spot in front of you and watch it to balance yourself.’ I used this tip for a while, and then I found a way that helps me to keep balance more efficiently.
So, what I do is keep my eyes half-open, and the gaze is not focused. I look down a bit and can gently see the tip of my nose. The external things get blurry, and there’s a feeling that I’m looking
than I stay longer in a pose, I also like concentrating on my breath.
Pic. 58 Tree pose
Now, as I’ve said, I try to keep my eyes shut during the whole practice. Yet, I’m not so advanced to close my eyes, stand on one leg and perform various balancing exercises. For this reason, I do the Balancing poses last.
When I finish with all the asanas, get relaxed and recharged in Shavasana, my mind becomes still. That’s a good time to open my eyes and do the Balancing postures. And, in fact, now I can manage these poses much better than at the beginning of my practice.
I don’t insist that this is the best way to do a Balancing posture. It works for me, and you can try it out for yourself.
On group classes, the length of Shavasana varies from one teacher to another. Even though it looks effortless, Corpse pose is considered one of the most advanced asanas in yoga. It teaches us to take control of the mind and use it to achieve deep relaxation.
Finding peace and enjoying the state of just being could be a challenging task for a modern person. We are overwhelmed with workload and tons of information coming from social media. We struggle to make the right decisions and find some meaning in life. We want to feel accepted and loved by others. We try hard to please those around, sacrifice on our own beliefs, and then wonder why satisfaction is not coming.
We consume too much sweet, salty, and spicy food and experience intense mood swings as a result. All this stress accumulates in our body and sits there in the form of energy blocks, which, if not duly released, may cause certain illnesses.
Bad habits, extreme sports, sex, and other entertaining activities merely switch our attention. We forget about our worries and pains for a little while. But we don’t deal with the blockages. The energy won’t start running smoothly through the body unless we take effort to clean up our system.
The first goal of Shavasana is the so-called ‘energy shower.’ We move our attention from one part of the body to another part, and where the attention goes, the energy follows. This way, scanning through the whole body, we intentionally create the energy flow that pushes the blockages out.
A block locks up a lot of energy. So, when this stagnant energy gets released, we feel energized and uplifted.
The second goal of Shavasana is to stop our thinking process. In ordinary life, our brain is always on. It thinks all the time, switching from one thought to another, and ultimately wandering in circles.
You may compare it with a computer. If you open 50 different pages, eventually, it will freeze. It won’t be able to process the data. Then you have to shut down the computer or reload the system.
Likewise, our brain can’t work at its full potential if you load it with tasks and information, but never shut it down. The mind becomes dull; it lacks freshness. It goes through the same thought patterns, but it’s not capable of finding the right solution.
That’s why ancient texts in various traditions claim that meditation is vitally important. When we are in a deep meditative state, the ever- wandering mind is still. There’s no thinking process, and the system can get reloaded.
It can happen in seated meditation, or it can happen in Shavasana. After you’ve taken a proper ‘energy shower,’ you’re likely to fall into a ‘no mind’ state and enjoy its benefits.
The Buddhist monks used to sleep for just half an hour. It was enough for them to refresh, for they could fall into a state of deep sleep right away. Our concentration power isn’t so sharp these days. So, we need to keep our Shavasanas longer to get fully relaxed and energized.
It’s really wise that many teachers in India use a longer Shavasana after intensive practice. They know that some students may get stressed performing challenging asanas or asanas they don’t particularly like. But the long final Shavasana will wash away their pains and let them feel light and tension-free.
In my daily practice, I can’t a fford to have long Shavasana, but I try to use my time wisely. I don’t name the body parts I go through, thereby shortening the ‘energy shower’ phase. I direct the energy along the same routes that are used in a standard yoga class: arms, legs, front, back, neck, face, head… But I just don’t make stops going through different parts of the body.
The energy moves in milliseconds. So, this exercise can be done quite fast, say, two minutes for the whole body. And, in fact, scanning through the body without verbal instructions also helps to keeps the mind quiet.
The rest of the time I use for meditation. Since I’m a mum of a 2-year-old, I don’t have a luxury to do a separate seated meditation. That’s why I bring my favorite techniques right into Shavasana.
Whatever techniques you know and love, would work great after the ‘energy shower.’ You could concentrate on various energy centers (chest, belly, sacrum, etc.) to further clean up your system.
You could work on stimulating your pituitary gland and developing your intuitive skills. For this, you can concentrate on 4 different points. One is in between the eyebrows. Another is its projection in the middle of the skull. One more is its projection on the back of the head. And, finally, the point on the top of the skull, which was soft when we were babies.
You could do affirmations to structure your life in a certain way.
You could apply hands on various parts of your body where you feel energy blockages. It’s our natural habit to put our hands on the points of pain. Our hands work great, even without any initiations in Reiki healing.
Applying hands gives a feeling of warmness and relaxation. It also helps to bring focus to the spot. Where the attention goes, the energy flows, i.e., we improve the blood circulation and let the energy flow more smoothly.
And after you’ve finished with all your techniques and this yoga tricks, just let yourself dissolve into being, the presence or whatever you may call it.