ASANA PRINCIPLES OF ASHTANGA YOGA with DAVID GARRIGUES
May 12-14, 2023
Astanga Yoga Studio
The central focus of this weekend workshop will be on learning 5 essential asana principles that you can use to develop or troubleshoot any pose. Understanding these principles will help you postulate answers to such questions as “What is the point or goal of doing this pose?” or “What constitutes improvement and how can I take safe, logical, and manageable steps to ensure that I’m optimally directing my efforts?” or Am I able to identify the physical, energetic, as well as the spiritual context for whatever I am doing?”
We’ll also explore how doing the routine tasks of daily practice can lead you into yoga philosophy and give you a direct means of absorbing the profound, mystical wisdom of yoga.
Asana Principles 1 and 2 (Single Position and Crouch and Spring) Applied to Surya Namaskara
Asana Principles 3 and 4 (Foundation First and Spinal Gesture) Applied to standing and seated poses of Primary Series.
Asana Principle 5 –Freeing up the Breath and activating Bandhas–
Applied to Pranayama–practical and theoretical
Yoga Philosophy: Connecting the Asana Principles with the Teachings of Sacred Texts
ASANA PRINCIPLES 1 and 2 (THE SINGLE POSITION AND CROUCH AND SPRING) APPLIED TO SURYA NAMASKARA
The principle of the Single Position says: One root pose is the source of every pose. Samasthiti represents this one pose because its form is composed of a single vertical line (known as a Danda or Stick). By learning to dynamically align your skeleton in a pose that contains only this simple, foundational line, you can learn to express any form with a totality of participation and gain consummate asana expertise. The second principle says: there is one universal approach to every transition. It is called the Crouch and Spring because you approach every movement with: 1) a crouch-a formal setup position where you galvanize and get ready for action before taking action 2) a spring-where you launch yourself into motion with a fully committed move and create an instance of pure, supremely confident action.
This class will show you how the positions and transitions of Surya Namaskara are at once basic enough and yet also different enough to help you learn to base your efforts on the principles of the Single Position and the Crouch and Spring.
ASANA PRINCIPLES 3 and 4 (FOUNDATION FIRST AND SPINAL GESTURE) APPLIED TO STANDING AND SEATED POSES
Principle #3 says: build your pose from the ground up by skillfully using your legs (and arms). Principle #4 says: the main event of a pose is to awaken your spine through connecting to the earth and skillfully generating forces within your legs and arms.
Part one of this class will focus on how the standing postures initiate you into many facets of Hatha Yoga technology including: creating a supra stable pose, opening your hips intelligently, commanding the movements of your spine, freeing your breath, and triggering Mula and Uddiyana bandhas. Part two will focus on transferring the skills gained in standing poses to the more challenging arena of the seated poses. We’ll investigate how to bring equal power and smarts to such basics as grounding your limbs, awakening your spine, and freeing your breath.
ASANA PRINCIPLE 5 – FREEING THE BREATH – APPLIED TO THE THEORY AND PRACTICE OF PRANAYAMA
Part one will be a lecture on the yoga philosophy that leads to the discipline of Pranayama. Drawing upon such texts as: the Bhagavad Gita, Yoga Sutras, and Hatha Yoga Pradipika, we’ll discuss the relevance of the asana practice to awakening Kundalini (Coiled) and also the relationship between the Citta Vrtti Nirodha (Cessation of the mind’s activity) and the concept of Prana, the Life Force or invisible Energy that is the hidden matrix of everything in the material world. Part 2 will be an active Pranayama class that includes breathing exercises, working with the two internal Vayu patterns that are associated with the breath, retention, and introduction to the Ashtanga Yoga Pranayama sequence.
Highlights include identifying yoga philosophy that is relevant to Pranayama, working with activating Bandhas, awakening Kundalini, and stilling the mind.
A lively and informative Mysore class where you will receive individual guidance on applying the Asana Principle to your unique circumstances. We’ll also refer to the material covered in the previous classes to focus your efforts in ways that are logical, challenging, intelligent and fun. You can also explore your own sense of the balance between accurately following the classic Ashtanga system and at the same time customizing your practice to ensure that you tap your creativity and repeat only what you want to reinforce.
YOGA PHILOSOPHY: CONNECTING THE ASANA PRINCIPLES WITH THE TEACHINGS OF THE SACRED TEXTS
The subject of the talk will be TBA. An example of a potential talk subject is: Yoga Sutras Book 1: Sutra 20
5 qualities to cultivate on and off the prayer rug:
1) Sraddha—faith–3 prongs
2) Virya–energy, strength, enthusiasm,,vigor
3) Smrti—remembrance, focusing on pravrtti (higher thoughts)
4) Samadhi—focus, meditation, absorption, merging with the Infinite.
5) Prajna—Awakening intellect, intuition, wisdom faculty, insight
These five concepts can be thought of as five jars of desirable qualities that you want to keep replenishing through yoking yourself to the discipline of yoga. We’ll investigate the different technical, poetic, practical, and inspirational meanings of each one of these powerhouse words and inquire into how this unique combination of qualities gives the ultimate gift of self-knowledge.
For price details and to register visit:
Astanga Yoga Studio