Jason's Articles

Why is It Better to HOLD Asana Poses Instead of Constantly Moving Through Them in a Yoga Class?

By Jason Winters.

Current modern yoga is filled with this style of Asana practice, leading students towards one goal… identification and personification of the external shape of the body! And for what reason?

If the true purpose of yoga is to experience & move through the densest aspects of ourselves, which we obviously recognize as the physical body, towards our true nature, as light, subtle eternal, divine consciousness… then Asana as continuous movement is simply a ‘preparation’. So… Why do all the work with no pay off? Why set the stage for no performance? Why build the temple, and not bask in its glory?

Traditional Hatha Yoga teaches us to…

  1. Do less poses (Asanas)
  2. Hold Asanas longer
  3. Remove all voluntary movement
  4. Observe (without judgment) involuntary movements
  5. Ease our effort
  6. Sit back as the ‘Witness’

So the next time you feel frustrated in a class because your being challenged to remain steady, calm, & truly present in the moment… even in something as simple as Tadasana (mountain pose)… ask yourself these questions and be willing to seek the answers with a sense of passionate curiosity.

  • Why choose to run away, fidget, check your phone, or avoid a new/challenging situation when life is so gloriously presenting an opportunity to learn something?
  • What is this feeling that there’s something better to be done or that you’re ‘missing out’? As if there is anything more important than devoting time, awareness, & patience to discovering your greatest purpose & potential?
  • How can there be ‘Life changing’ moments, wisdom, enlightenment, or clarity if Life is one endless multi-tasking event filled with notifications, swimming in a sea of spinning thoughts?
    Every chance you get in traditional Hatha Yoga practice to hold an Asana for an extended period of time will directly address these topics, and so much more.

We ARE energy ‘beings’ made of many layers with differing vibrations, so let’s get to the deep and meaningful ones through the most important aspect of Asana practice… to steady ourselves mentally & physically… to prepare, purify, & remove obstacles that are blocking us from realizing the immense beauty of our own inner LIGHT! And finally to remember that we are not separate from our Source, but instead a spark of infinite expression destined to return home.