- The viniyoga of Āsana - The Definition of Āsana according to Haṭha and Rāja Yoga - Part 1 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - There are Many Approaches to Āsana Practice - Part 2 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - The Principles used in Constructing an Āsana Practice - Part 3 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Considerations around the Direction of Āsana Practice - Part 4 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Common Points within the Variables in Āsana Practice - Part 5 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Planning an Appropriate Āsana Practice - Part 6 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Different Types of Postural Activity in Āsana Practice - Part 7 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Voluntary and Involuntary Effects in a students Āsana Practice - Part 8 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Responses and Respect - Part 9 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Safety Factors - Part 10 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Compromise - Part 11 of 15 (This post)
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Adaptation of Practice - Part 12 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - The Role of Āsana - Part 13 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Summary of Ideas on how to Practice - Part 14 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Guidelines to the Practice of Āsana - Part 15 of 15
- The viniyoga of Āsana - Collective of Parts 1-15
Working with safety factors brings in another factor to consider.
This is the element of compromise in the body. This is often something you don’t see.
For example a movement of the head in sarvāṅgāsana.
Thus the body tells us something but we are not always aware of what it is. This can be the result of factors in ones life.
And, as said, it can often show in ways we cannot see.
- position of feet
- Tension in face
- Position of hands
- Angle of shoulders
- Angle of arms
So we must respect our limitations as well as our assets. This also applies that as a teacher we should be aware of the students limitations.
These are variables according to person, climate, environment, etc. They are not constant and neither are the effects. This compromise can react in many ways.
- You put your mind in one place during an āsana, the body compensates and places the escape elsewhere.
It is the teacher that usually observes the escape rather than the area of the body where the mind is.
This is another example of an involuntary response to a voluntary movement.
There are certain responses to voluntary movements, these can be voluntary (conscious) or involuntary (unconscious).
For example in āsana what we try to do can have a response:
- In what we want to happen
- In what we don’t want to happen
Voluntary things become involuntary then you lose touch with what is happening.
If you are doing the same āsana practice, over a long period of time, it is not the same because it becomes a habit. In this it can have a different effect to what is required.
Thus when you design an āsana practice for a long period you should be very careful. In this instance you should compromise and build in a safety factor.
We can either respect our limits or else overwork them and create a need to rectify. This is where the idea of using the same āsana practice all the time is limited.
The next post will explore the idea of adapting the āsana practice.
Extracts from my notes from my 121 Studies in India with TKV Desikachar whilst resident in Madras 1979-1981.