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Anniversary (60-min) Slow Flow

A slow flow yoga class featuring a little bit of everything, this class works with twists, backbends, leg balancing, inversions and a mantra. Dance in your breath through a standing series that flows from warrior 1 to warrior 3 before moving onto your belly for several variations of Dhanurasana (bow pose) using a strap. You’ll create space in the chest, shoulders, side body, and hamstrings while building strength in the core and back body. This class features a quote from Douglas Brooks to anchor the practice and invites you to contemplate your expression and meaning of freedom.

How we experience ourselves in [any] act determines our experiences of bondage or freedom…we need not change the world but rather understand, as clearly as possible, just how it works. When we know how the world works then we know what to do and, at least at some level, our choices in action become obvious imperatives. “All creatures, even a person of knowledge, behave according to their nature” (3.33, Bhagavad Gita), and this is not a problem unless we fail to understand what we can and cannot do ourselves. The more deeply we know ourselves, the more fluently we will act for the sake of what is greater than merely ourselves.” – Douglas Brooks, Poised For Grace

May we connect to the part of ourselves that does not change- may we act from this place of integrated understanding- recognizing that there is light within all of us, and it is this that unites us.

Style: Vinyasa

Duration: 60-minutes

Level: open

Props: 2 Blocks, 1 Strap.

Focus: standing leg balances, and arm binds moving towards Flamingo pose.

Location: Vancouver, BC

Music: Spotify playlist:

This class opens with three calls to Aum and the Pavamana Mantra.

The Pavamana Mantra

asato ma sadgamaya

tamaso ma jyotirgamaya

mrtyorma amrtam gamaya

om shanti shanti shanti

 

ॐ असतो मा सद्गमय ।

तमसो मा ज्योतिर्गमय ।

मृत्योर्मा अमृतं गमय ।

ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ॥

 

Lead me from the asat to the sat

Lead me from darkness to light

Lead me from death to immortality

 

For more on the mantra, visit this link.

Balasana (child’s pose)

10-15 breath to move as you like, options:

  • Balasana (child’s pose)
  • Adho Mukha Shvanasana (down dog)
  • Uttanasana (forward fold)
  • Bidalasana (cat pose)
  • Bitilasana (cow pose)

Come to Tadasana at the back of your mat.

Opening Flow

Tadasana (mountain pose) take your feet as wide as your mat

  • Inhale and take the hands to the sky
  • Exhale and bow, place the hands on the earth
  • Inhale and slowly roll up to stand (take 2 full breaths to roll up)
  • Repeat several cycles

Urdvha Hastasana (hands to sky)

Uttanasana (forward fold)

Ardha Uttanasana (half lift)

Phalakasana (plank pose)

Utthita Stiti Bhujangasana (finger stand cobra)

Salamba Bhujangasana (sphynx pose)

  • Bend your knees and sway your hips from either side of your mat

Bhujangasana (cobra pose) OR Urdhva Mukha Shvanasana (upward facing dog)

Adho mukha svanasana (down dog)

Eka pada adho mukha svanasana (3-legged downward dog)

Anjaneyasana (lunge) variation with the back knee on the ground

  • Place your blocks on either side of your hips
  • Lower the pelvis
  • Lift your chest
  • Press your palms on your blocks and breath into the front body

Anjaneyasana (lunge) variation with back knee lifted

  • Squeeze the inner thighs
  • Reach your heart forward
  • Keep your hands on your blocks on either side of your feet
  • Lift one arm and reach the fingertips towards the front of your mat
  • Keep your bicep in line with your ear

Anahatasana (heart pose) variation with palms on your blocks

Adho mukha svanasana (down dog)

Uttanasana (forward fold) at the back of your mat

Tadasana (mountain pose)

Repeat the same sequence on the other leg.

Standing Flow 

Malasana (yogic squat)

  • Bring your hands to your heart
  • Option to reach the arms up to the sky

Tadasana (mountain pose) with arms up to the sky

Urdvha Hastasana (hands to sky)

Uttanasana (forward fold)

Ardha Uttanasana (half lift)

Phalakasana (plank pose)

Utthita Stiti Bhujangasana (finger stand cobra)

Salamba Bhujangasana (sphynx pose)

  • Bend your knees and sway your hips from either side of your mat

Bhujangasana (cobra pose) OR Urdhva Mukha Shvanasana (upward facing dog)

Adho mukha svanasana (down dog)

Eka pada adho mukha svanasana (3-legged downward dog)

Virabhadrasana I (warrior 1 pose) flowing variation

  • Inhale and lift your back heel off of the ground
  • Exhale and lower your torso halfway
  • Inhale and hold this pose
  • Exhale and stand up; grab your extended heel with the opposite hand
  • Inhale and stand up a little taller
  • Exhale and shift into warrior 3 pose
  • Inhale and hold warrior 3
  • Exhale and step back into warrior 1 pose
  • Repeat three cycles with your breath

Parsvottanasana (pyramid pose) variation

  • Place your hands at your hips
  • Lower the torso halfway
  • Hold and breathe
  • Place your hands on the earth
  • Hold and breathe

Adho mukha svanasana (down dog)

Phalakasana (plank pose)

Bhujangasana (cobra pose) OR Urdhva Mukha Shvanasana (upward facing dog)

Adho mukha svanasana (down dog)

Eka pada adho mukha svanasana (3-legged downward dog)

Anjaneyasana (lunge)

Parivrtta Anjaneyasana (revolved lunge pose)

Eka pada adho mukha svanasana (3-legged downward dog)

  • Take hip mandalas

Phalakasana (plank pose) with lifted leg extended

Bharmanasana (tabletop pose)

  • Lift one leg and extend it behind you
  • Lift the opposite hand and extend your arm in line with your ear
  • Hold and breathe

Eka pada adho mukha svanasana (3-legged downward dog)

Phalakasana (plank pose)

Bhujangasana (cobra pose) OR Urdhva Mukha Shvanasana (upward facing dog)

Adho mukha svanasana (down dog)

Phalakasana (plank pose)

Dhanurasana (bow pose) variation

  • Bend one knee and grab your heel with the same hand
  • Extend the opposite hand in line with your ear
  • Extend the lowered leg

Parsva Vasisthasana (side plank pose) variation

Balasana (child’s pose)

Marjaryasana/Bitilasana (cat/cows)

Uttanasana (forward fold)

Malasana (yogic squat)

Repeat the same sequence on the other leg.

Backbend Flow 

Dhanurasana (bow pose) variation using the strap

Setu bandha sarvāṅgāsana (bridge pose)

Urdhva Dhanurasana (wheel pose)

Cooling Flow

Ardha Matsyendrasana (seated spinal twist)

Viparita Karani (legs up the wall) OR

Sarvangasana (shoulder stand)

Ananda Balasana (happy baby pose)

Savasana or seated meditation to close.

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