The anchor and the explorer

by Alice Dommert
March 5, 2018
Yoga

In the practice of yoga the mystery of balance is a process of discovery. There are the obvious balance poses, like tree pose where one leg lifts and you are balanced on the other leg. In side angle pose balance happens in a very different way.

Iyengar, one of the fathers of yoga, was said to have identified one body part as the anchor and one as the explorer in every pose. In side angle the back foot, and particularly the outside edge of the foot, is that anchor. To truly anchor the foot, the quad muscles on that leg must be fully engaged and pressing down through the foot as if wanting to press a deep foot print into the mud of the earth.

With the foot anchored, the top arm stretched overhead is the explorer reaching across the sky. It is easy to be a bit wobbly (this pose is nice to try against a wall if you can). The key to a solid, balanced pose here is that the strong anchored foot allows for a big reach of the arm overhead. It’s the tension between the two that provides the stability.

This is a beautiful metaphor for life. Being anchored about what matters gives you the base to stretch and reach further to achieve something unexpected. When you are tentative you wobble. Commit and have courage to stretch.  Then the treasure can be revealed.

Enjoy!

Alice Dommert

Alice Dommert

Founder, Wholebeing Architect

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