Saturday was a lovely afternoon where a group of us explored how yoga can help our posture in every day life. The 3 hour workshop explored our own individual postures, how life has imprinted on us over the years perhaps with our shoulders hunched from rounding over a computer screen, or our bodies become more uneven from left to right as we carry children or heavy bags over the years always preferring one side over the other.
Some postures of course we are born with, but for many of us it reflects how we carry ourselves and our individual strengths and weaknesses. Have you ever noticed how body builder may have rounded shoulders as the over-strengthened abdominal muscles don't have the appropriate back strength to maintain a well balanced posture? Interesting imprints of life!
Yoga was traditionally applied to help strengthen the body so that the student could then go on to sit for long period in meditation without the body aching or distracting and with the mind calm and ready to meditate. So many yoga asana are directly aimed at improving our own posture, whether our goal is to meditate or not.
Yoga can help us notice our posture, developing awareness in our lives of our habits and patterns, and exercises that can help compensate and strengthen or stretch us appropriately to rebalance our bodies. Just 15 minutes a day can help have a significant impact on our own posture and help us all stand tall.