One way to mindfully and intelligently learn yoga is to learn your muscles. Your muscles not only move your body, they help you to feel it.
Additional benefits of muscle activation include:
If you want to maintain joint health, mobility and longevity,
exercise and use your muscles.
I've been teaching yoga for almost 20 years.
For the last ten years I've been working on reducing my own knee, hip and back pain.
The main thing that I've found helpful is learning to feel and control my muscles.
Exercise was important, but muscle control allowed me to exercise more effectively.
An unexpected bonus is that the same "muscle control" that helped me to deal with pain also helped me to improve flexibility.
These routines aren't specifically designed for pain relief or flexibility. Instead they focus on the specific building blocks necessary if you do want to work on pain relief or flexibility.
And, they provide exercises for helping you to keep your joints strong and mobile.
In terms of every day living, joints are critical structures.
While we need muscles to move our joints, muscles have some overlap.
And joint replacement surgeries are not a pleasant experience. (My father recently had a hip replaced.)
one possible key to long term joint health is to simply exercise. And if you do nothing else, do that. Exercise, get moving.
These routines offers a slightly more focused approach.
If you aren't sure about what exercises to do, if you simply want someone to tell you what to do, if you are short on time, then these routines can help get you started.
Having muscle control means that you can feel your muscles when they activate and when they relax. (It also means being able to activate particular muscles, and relax them.)
If you can feel your muscles, that means they are active.
If you can feel, for example your spine, spinal muscles are what give you that ability to feel your spine.
This course teaches you basic muscle control so that you can better feel and control your body and help keep your joints healthy.
This approach to learning muscle control is much like learning to drive a car (using a manual gearbox), but instead you learn to become a better driver of your body.
(And actually, riding a motorcycle is a better analogy, since riding a motorcycle also requires balance.)
This is a beginners course.
You'll learn how to feel (and control) your spine, your ribcage, your shoulders, your hips.
And you'll also learn how to feel and control your feet and shins.
Believe it or not, but good foot control can affect both your knees and your hips and it can also affect your ability to balance while standing.
Meanwhile, good spine control can affect your hips and (in part via your ribcage) your shoulders.
You'll also learn how to improve your balance on one foot (and how to compensate)
I live and teach yoga in Taiwan.
My Mandarin is not that good, and yet I still manage to teach effectively. I do that by breaking things down and by using clear and simple instructions.
These routines are taught in English, and they are taught in a way that makes it easy for you to begin learning to feel and control your body.
In these routines, there's also emphasis on adjusting how you do these exercises. This isn't about blindly doing poses and exercises, but actually modulating how you do them for a better experience of your body.
If you've ever had to listen to an old fashioned radio, you had to tune in to the radio station. In the same way, you can get a better feel for your body by simply tuning or adjusting the way that you use it.
These routines are viewable as videos. Each exercise is taught as a follow along. But each exercise is also instructed so that you can easily do the exercises without the video.
Each routine is different but with some repeated exercises. Each gives you a slightly different way to exercise your body.
Initially I would suggest you do the routines in order since some of the exercises build up on each other. However, once you've done all of the routines, and are comfortable with the exercises, the routines can be done in any order.
Each routine is broken down into smaller mini-routines of varying length (the longest is no more than 20 minutes). If you are short on time you can focus on the mini-routines.
Some of the exercises can also be practiced anywhere you like. So if you have difficulty with a particular action, you can practice it whenever you have the time.
You can get the course on Udemy or on Gumroad.
Udemy offers a nice interface for viewing and bookmarking videos online.
With gumroad you can stream the videos or download them.
This discount applies to the first 100 purchasers.
You'll be taken to the Udemy site when you press the above button.
A popover should appear showing the product page on the gumroad site.
If you have any problems use the contact form to get in touch with me.