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The director of Ajna Yoga, where I am taking my yoga teacher training is Jules Payne. She is an incredible teacher who offers a great sense of humour, fun, compassion and a nurturing presence in her classes. Last night she taught us a “Yoga for Back Pain” asana class. After we spent the rest of the night talking about working with students suffering from back, neck and knee injuries.To say my brain is full would be an understatement. There is SO MUCH DEPTH in yoga and SO MUCH TO LEARN. Really! I have said this before but it is truly mind boggling how rich this subject matter is. I have a list of around 40 “must read books” that I have scribbled in my notes during this course. I am feeling incredibly inspired and excited to (hopefully)  be working soon in such an amazing field.

Here are a few notes (stolen from Jules’ whiteboard) from last nights class regarding practicing yoga safely :

  1. Move with the breath
  2. Never move past your point of comfort/range of motion
  3. Move from your inner strength (i.e. deep abdominals)
  4. Maintain a neutral pelvis
  5. Take care with weak points in spine (where the spine changes direction)

Our class was presented in the context of teaching injured bodies but really.. we would ALL BENEFIT if we followed those five simple things in our yoga practice.