I have been aching for spring to arrive. I always find that by the end of March, my body starts to miss the energy that spring and summer naturally inspires.
Yoga and nature are intrinsically linked; even the common names from a lot of the postures are based on either animals or natural elements. So in honour of spring, I thought it would be fun to focus on poses that bring this season to the forefront.
Everywhere I turn, the buds of the trees are slowly ripening. It always amazes that what was once a brown brittle giant is now quickly transformed into green life forces. There is strength and durability in these beautiful gifts of nature.
The tree pose is aptly named to honour these magnificent natural beauties. To complete this pose successfully, it always helps to observe how trees move. Even the smallest breeze will create motion in an upper portion of the tree. However, if well planted and established, the trunk will remain grounded, as the roots will ensure this fixed posture.
In her article Save a Tree Pose, Charlotte Bradley has nicely detailed the steps of completing this beautiful balancing pose. When completing this pose, take your time and embrace the natural beauty of your body and its ability to balance itself.
The Rabbit: Embracing the Fertility of Spring
Rabbits are a significant sign of the arrival of spring. These active creatures represent fertility and stand for symbols of new life. It is not a coincidence that our modern society celebrates Easter with an Easter bunny. In Christian folklore, the arrival of the Easter bunny coincides with the rebirth of Christ. The rabbit pose (is an excellent movement to help stretch your spine, strengthen your posture and awaken your body. It is also helps alleviate colds, sinus problems and other congestion challenges that seem to awaken during pollen season. Slowly work through this pose, and only do the stretch as far as you feel comfortable.
The Butterfly: Bound Angle Pose
Although most butterflies don’t arrive until early summer in Canada, to me they have always represented spring. The external change from a caterpillar to the beautiful butterfly to me as always been a reflection of the change I feel when spring arrives.
The butterfly pose focuses on opening our bodies up and strengthening our flexibility. It is an excellent groin and hip opener, and is perfect for those days when you need a small stretch.
All of the yoga postures that I’ve focused on are based on slowly awakening, stretching and balancing our bodies. Similar to our outdoor environment, winter often puts us into a mini hibernation. Treat your body with the same respect that nature treats its creatures, allow yourself to slowly awaken and embrace the changes of spring.