For me, yoga and Nia often take me out of my own difficult places and into a place where I can express my pure joy. Yoga, because the combination of breath, focus, and mindfulness seem to “clear out” the stuff that accumulates between myself and my sense of bliss — I see yoga as a practice that creates a “clear channel” so that I can not only have a personal experience, but then share it through my work and life. As I dance with others through Nia, I have this sense of making a public statement about the sheer value of joy. There is something powerful about letting go of how we look, doing it “right,” and just dancing our hearts out together, in community. As we look out the windows and dance with the tree tops, the clouds, and whatever birds may be flying by, there’s a sense of first letting go, that leads into joy and finally into a sense of wholeness and peace. Here’s a great quote on why we dance, believe it or not, it’s generally attributed to Albert Einstein, although it isn’t clear: “We dance for laughter, we dance for tears, we dance for madness, we dance for fears, we dance for hopes, we dance for screams, we are the dancers, we create the dreams.”
Let’s take another look at a fun posture, good for opening us up for spring. “The Roaring Lion Posture (whose original Indian name is Simhasana) in Yoga is suitable for people of all ages and types (including old and weak) because it is relatively easy to perform. The posture is sometimes referred to as Bhairavasana . . . The posture gets its name because the face of the person performing it resembles the face of a Roaring Lion (Simha Mudra or Lion Face Gesture) because of the open mouth and extended tongue.” Kind of fun to combine lion pose with some spring bunnies . . . Everyone is doing it!