The Sacred Triangle
Triangle poses help us to build the necessary strength and endurance to balance out and support our ever-increasing flexibility. They have great subtleties of stretch and alignment, making them the single most important group of postures for awakening intelligence throughout the whole of the body. Being fairly strenuous, triangle poses awaken some inner heat, preparing the body for the postures that follow. They also have a wonderfully stimulating effect on the digestive and circulatory systems, removing dullness and lethargy, leaving the body feeling light and alive. Triangles are big, whole body poses, which encourage a sense of fullness and space. They teach us how each body part is interconnected and how to play the five lines off of each other to produce greater stability, poise and balance. There is no part these postures don’t reach – increasing mobility in the feet, awareness in the hands and fingers, space in the heart, power in the legs, release in the neck and shoulders, and openness in the hips. Triangle postures are a toning invigorating tonic for the body and mind.
Are the step-by-step, breath-by-breath methods of entering and leaving a posture. Vinyasa creates a physical, mental and energetic continuity or flow between postures. This teaches us that the journey into the posture is as relevant as the posture itself. The essence of vinyasa is a union of movement, breath and awareness in an unbroken stream.
It’s only by going down that we can truly go up. Whatever body part is in contact with the floor provides the foundation on which he rest of the body stands. The stability of our structure in any posture is dependent on the quality of our connection with the floor. This may be our two feet in samasthiti or our hands and feet in downdog. This foundation needs to have an even distribution of weight (e.g. between the two feet in Triangle), maximum surface area (spread of the fingers in downdog) and a depth of grounding.
The Five Lines
The five primary lines of energy in the body run through the two legs, two arms and the spine. These energy lines radiate out from the core or lower belly. It’s through these lines that we run our stretch, breath and awareness within a pose.
The Nature of Breath Within the Pose
The nature of the inhalation is to expand. It enables us to grow into the pose and to fill out the shape of the posture, to stretch, reach and extend. Its nature is out going, opening, energising, enthusiastic and heating.
The nature of the exhalation is to contract. It enables us to fold and bow, to surrender and let go into new spaces. Its nature is inward moving, penetrating, releasing and cooling.
These two forces of inhalation and exhalation create a tidal rhythm within the body and mind. The idea is to swim with the tide. To encourage a sense of letting go, relaxing and emptying in our movement as we breathe out.