Soul of Yoga, November 2023

QUOTES:
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “Asanas don’t have alignment, people have alignment. Asana is something people do, it does not exist outside of an individual’s body.”
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “There is no such thing as an asana without the person making the shape. You can’t abstract asana outside of the person doing it.”
  • From Leslie’s work with Amy Matthews, which references her work with Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen: “Alignment is a clear pathway of weight passing through balanced joint spaces.”
  • T.K.V. Desikachar: “The recognition of confusion is a form of clarity.”
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “Figuring out (swadhaya) what is negotiable (tapas) and what is not (ishvara pranidhana) – based on your anatomy – is the basis of Yoga practice.”
  • T.K.V. Desikachar: “You cannot have yoga without viyoga.”
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “In yoga we’re not looking to add anything that is missing from the system. It’s to focus on what is still going right in the body and help unblock what is in the way.”
  • T.K.V. Desikachar: “Yoga is relationship.”
  • T.K.V. Desikachar: “Without the breath it’s not Yoga.”
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “Difference is the norm.” and “Variation is normal. Your body is normal for you.”
  • T.K.V. Desikachar: “Your yoga practice must always be a little more clever than your habits (tapas).”
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “If once you arrive in an asana it needs correcting, reconsider how you got there.”
  • Amy Matthews, paraphrasing Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen: “Healthy movement is well-distributed: a little bit of movement from a lot of places.” This was further clarified by Leslie: “a little bit of movement, coming from a lot of places, repeated a reasonable number of times.”
  • Conversely, Leslie Kaminoff says “Unhealthy movement is too much movement coming from too few places repeated too many times (repetitive stress).”
  • T.K.V. Desikachar: “The form of the practice should serve the function.”
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “Yoga is not about doing the asanas; it’s about undoing what’s in the way of the asanas.”
  • Sthira/sukha as defined by T.K.V. Desikachar: “Alertness without tension/ relaxation without dullness.”
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “Flexibility without strength is instability. Strength without flexibility is rigidity.”
  • T.K.V. Desikachar: “Sometimes you need to give people 90% of what they want so you can slip in 10% of what they need.”
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “It is far more powerful to engage someone in an inquiry than issue a series of instructions and corrections.”
  • Leslie Kaminoff: “The benefit of learning a new breathing technique is unlearning your old way of breathing.”

WATCH/LISTEN:
RECOMMENDED READING:

Should We Keep Mula Bandha All The Time?

Have you heard advice about maintaining mula bandha all the time? Have you heard advice about maintaining any body position all the time? Join Leslie and students as they examine well-meaning advice, habits, and practices you can follow to honor the balance into your system.


WHAT IS FLEXIBILITY, AND HOW MUCH DO WE REALLY NEED?

Do you do yoga to live a better life, or do you live to do better yoga? Your answer may surprise you, and it will help you learn where to set healthy limits in your own practice.

HONESTY IN YOGA CREDENTIALING