Weekly Focus: Anahata (heart chakra)
The end of winter can feel unbearable, it may feel as though the earth will not rise again (especially as we find false hope in the warming — freezing — warming patterns of Indiana!!). To find balance, we open our heart space, considering those deep + intimate connections we forge. Connecting with loved ones brings us hope. While Winter is a time to reconnect with the Self + create space for reflection + rest, we want to be careful not to find an excess of isolation. It is still important for us to find connection with those we care about, to help us stay afloat + offer support to one another. By attuning into our heart chakra, we open our hearts to the needs of others, + may find that in return our needs are met as well. Sometimes simple connections can remind us that not all is darkness, that Spring is just beyond the horizon.
Active Pose of the Week: Trikonasana (triangle pose)
Allow your heart to shine outwards as you extend beyond yourself. Triangle pose is an expansion of the body as we stretch legs + arms away from one another! To open the heart we find a back bend + a twist in the upper (thoracic) spine. As we focus on the openness of our heart this week, you may consider practicing triangle pose with a block — no matter what your normal practice looks like. With more length in the arm + a firm surface to press against, we can find a leverage to open our chest + shoulders to the sky!
Passive Pose of the Week: Anahatasana (puppy dog pose)
Open your heart to create space for those around you. Allow your heart to be soft + settled as you extend yourself in offering of connection. From a tabletop pose, walk your hands forward + allow your chest to drop between the arms. If this creates too much sensation in the shoulders or the armpits, feel free to offer yourself some support. Lifting the ground by placing a stack of blankets, a bolster, or a firm cushion beneath the chest + belly can allow this pose to become more restorative. A practice in opening our hearts to our own needs reminds us of how to open our hearts to others.