Michael McDonald's Blog

Vinyasa: Keeping the Connection

One of the many things I love about Astanga Yoga is its emphasis on vinyasa, the quick yet artful sequence of moving from one pose to another. In Astanga, you keep the bandhas engaged and the ujjayi breathing even throughout the entire form. Moving from one pose to the next is fluid and there really is no distinction between being in a pose and the movement between poses. (This is also the reason I don’t like Iyengar, which is traditionally very stop and go.)

These connecting movements are what elevates a series of actions into an art.

This applies to everything.

In The Journey from the Center to the Page (an excellent book applying yogic ideas and practices to writing) writers are encouraged to use simple rituals to go into and out of their writing practice, using yoga vinyasas as an analogy.

In acting, Stanislovski refers to this as the Unbroken Line. Always be doing something. Never stop. Amateur actors are often lively when speaking but in between their lines they are little more than actors waiting for a cue.

I’m pretty good at connecting with people, but this has been harder for me to accomplish when the heat gets turned up. When I took on a leadership position at AMP last weekend I found myself quickly assigning roles and tasks to everyone, but not always fully connecting. My practice is to be able to lock in and make sure that whatever I give to someone is fully understood and accepted, and to do so in a split second. I rarely connected as deeply as I would have liked, but it’s a muscle and I’ll keep working it.

Take a look at your life, moment to moment. Then take a look at how you move between those moments. Do you collapse or shoot into your head? Are you sleepwalking from one task into the other? Or do you really acknowledge the end of one thing as you move into the next?

link  |   |  9/26/08 03:12pm
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