Turn it Up, Turn it Up, Turn it Upside Down!
Inversions, postures in which we place the heart or feet higher than the head, can be challenging and sometimes nerve-wracking to learn. I vividly remember my first experience with headstand. After practicing yoga for about a year, I was feeling confident and decided to take a level three class. Two minutes into class my self-esteem plummeted when everyone popped into headstand with no guidance or assistance. The following 100 or so seconds were pretty much the longest seconds of my life.
I was scared of headstand as well as level three classes for a few weeks after that fateful day, but was finally coaxed to give it another go by a fantastic yoga instructor, Manel Rodrigues. Manel was encouraging and helped me learn headstand at my own pace. After a couple months, I was comfortably balancing in headstand.
If you’re just beginning to dive into full inversions, I encourage you to take a workshop or connect privately with a teacher if you have the resources. The techniques and assistance that can be shared in these settings are critical to enter into postures like headstand, handstand, and forearmstand safely and with confidence. If you’re beginning to venture into full inversions or looking to refine your alignment, Maral Hadidi will be leading a workshop on inversions in November. Her sweet, approachable style of teaching will undoubtedly create a fantastic atmosphere to experiment and grow your practice. –Michelle Laxton