Somatic Hatha Yoga
moving into stillness
Somatic movement emphasizes sensing and feeling within – awareness of the living body in its wholeness.
In our yoga classes we use somatic movement – movement with awareness – to reorganize our structure and pattern of movement.
Once we have found a way of doing something, we tend to always do it the same way – our movements become habitual and therefore limited. We rely heavily on some muscles, or some parts of ourselves, and others get neglected - the nervous system forgets about them. This causes deterioration in the whole body.
Somatic movement seeks to restore those forgotten parts of ourselves.
Take the spine, for example. It’s easy for us to bend at the neck and lower back – but in most people the vertebrae of the mid-back are capable of very little movement.
So in our classes we proceed slowly, with awareness, to find out whether we can bring the mid-back into our movement as well – in the cobra pose, for example. Are we just relying on our lower back and neck to do what may at first glance seem to be a perfect backward bend?
With awareness, the nervous system wakes up to the possibility of movement in the whole spine - and this is the beginning of change in how we organize ourselves.
This can mean less pain, less stiffness, more flexibility. In the yoga class, we can approach a hatha yoga pose with greater comfort and ease.
“… a diminished capacity for movement is equivalent to diminished life. Conversely… to enhance the efficiency of bodily movement is to enhance the vitality of human beings in all of their functions, whether physical, mental or emotional.”
Thomas Hanna, Body of Life
The Yoga Class
arrive a little early, to unwind before we start
bring your own mat / blanket etc.
wear loose, comfortable clothing and bring a warm jersey for yoga nidra
practice in bare feet or wear socks
“Yoga pose is mastered by relaxation of effort, to experience oneself as living in the infinite stream of life”
Patanjali, Yoga Sutras