#28daysofyin Day 7 : Feel Your Gut! (Stomach)
Mm I had to fill my tummy before I wrote about tummies! The Stomach meridian is our friend today, and may I introduce my favourite Yin pose, Saddle. It definitely wasn't always my favourite and - I'm not going to lie - when I'm stressed its the first pose I lose! It's a deep backbend for many (me! Psoas...) but our focus here today is the thighs, where the branch of the Stomach meridian we're interested in runs through. If we basically think of digestion as a refining process (from gross, go subtle, to gross again), the Stomach works with the Spleen to deal with some of the more subtle energies of the body. Upon receiving food, well chewed by the teeth, of course, it extracts the chi from the saliva and the food we eat and sends it to the lungs, to be mixed with air chi and transported around the body. The Stomach extracts and balances all five elemental energies from our food...it nourishes all the other organs. When we're anxious, confused and hyper (or manic), obsessive or compulsive, our Stomach energy (with the Spleen, our EARTH, our foundation) is out of balance...our energy gets low, we stop being able to deal with the world, we get overly sensitive. When we can't trust ourselves to truly FEEL (thinking and talking about feeling isn't feeling...), we can be pretty sure our Stomach could do with some support. The Earth is our Mother, the prime nourisher of all of us. So we gotta take care of our Mothers!! You know those people you meet who are grounded, down to earth, got that practical stuff under control, truly themselves, purposeful? They gots the balanced Earth energy! So let's get on the floor and do some Yin! Scared of this one? How about you channel your happy tummy, breathe deep and TRUST? It's all going to be ok. I've shown three options for this pose today, coz it challenges people! Anatomically, if you use your quads a lot (footy player, cyclists), this one will be tough! But patience, grasshopper. You've heard how Rome took a while to build, I'm guessing? 😉 Yes, the tops of your feet might complain. Lots of padding under the front of the ankle and the bones can help a lot.
Kneel, sit on heels or pillow, lean back onto hands or couch until your thighs groan, stay five mins.
Find a pillow or tightly rolled blanket or @kissenaustralia bolster. Sit on or between your heels (on usually means a deeper backbend but can feel better for some peoples' knees). Take your knees a comfortable distance apart. Line up your bolster so it's positioned to support your spine and head when you lay back. Start to lean back into your palms, then your elbows, then the bolster. Use LOTS of blankets/bolsters if necessary. Five mins.
Hit the floor, you got this. Five minutes. Ten if you feel the call. Mm. Fascia latae release feels good! I personally credit Saddle with 'fixing' my lower back issues...plus a lot of inner work in meditation! It took me two years to feel comfortable in this pose. So breathe, take your time, and enjoy. #saddle #yinyoga #stomachmeridian #tcm #fiveelements #yoga #yogaforall