Backbending Fusion Intensive


"Love is a skill- perhaps the toughest and hence, also the most beautiful. Just like your back bending practice, it takes you first through excitement, then pain, then through a lot of fear.... But, if you manage to remain consistent despite all that pain and exhaustion, it will bring immense strength, confidence and contentment to the heart.... All great things are difficult.."
-Yogacharya Venkatesha

I am a backbend enthusiast and gifted with a naturally flexible spine...so when this backbend fusion course came up, I knew I would be in my element. So much excitement to begin with, so eager to bend..that with even this I had very quickly learned was a disturbance to my practise. Excitement loses the focus, and loss of focus causes loss of stability. Suddenly I am reminded that backbending is a serious practise, and what Acharya teaches in this course is a series of backbending techniques aimed to increase flexibility in the body, proper alignments and strengthening of the mind. It's not a playground to see how far you can bend. The body is just the tool.

Over the first couple weeks I felt very exhausted during the days and moving through various pains in the body and the different emotions that come up in the mind. This practise really showed me my strengths and weaknesses...it was uncomfortable, confronting and challenging at times. I had never really faced myself in such a way before...It's actually amazing to realise how much we store in our spines. I imagine backbending is like wringing out a wet cloth, squeezing out all those old toxins that have been stored for so long.

What I really love is how backbending shows you your pain. And how to learn to move past it. Crossing the limitations of the mind, the barriers of pain, the confrontations of fear...it's super challenging at times. But as the practise goes on, I feel more strength and confidence...and more focus in my mind. I began to hold still in a deep backbend for a longer period of time, only focusing on my breath...and actually finding it meditative! The more I focused on my breath, the stiller I became. (If only I could say the same for my forwards bends!) 

Even my meditation practises got better. I had more focus, more stillness. The pain I felt in my meditation asana also began to dissipate. Some days I felt no pain at all. Am I overcoming pain? Is this linked to the backbending practise? Surely it is! 

So much energy came to me in the last weeks. So much joy, love, trust and positivity! I feel this courage and confidence inside me, that I felt I was always lacking before. Backbends are such great teachers of life skills. It takes energy, devotion, will, discipline and care. Patience and practise brings progress! Dropping back into chakrasana is my example. The more the mind is controlled, the more the body is controlled. There is no rush and there is no end result in this. Now it's time to go further, to go beyond...

I would have liked the course to have been longer though. Perhaps one week longer, or two, or three.... but the great thing is, I have the knowledge and confidence to continue this practise safely on my own. And that is a great gift from this course!


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