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Autumn is when we use all the energy we have just harvested in late summer to stock up internally for the colder months ahead and preparing our bodies and minds as we slow down.
My absolute favourite season, the air, the colours, the foods, the misty mornings and crisp evenings! For some people, especially highly sensitive people (HSPs), the slowing down of this season can be a welcome break after the high energies of spring and summer.

As this is the time of year for the lungs, naturally we are taking a look at how we breathe and incorporate breathing practices or 'Pranayama' into our lives. The breath is pivotal to any yoga practice but also, can be used to help us in daily life. We can use it to re-balance, enliven, calm down, soothe panic, and even use our inhales & exhales to massage the internal organs...The diaphragm, which lies directly underneath your lungs, makes a downwards motion allowing the lungs to inflate as you inhale, this compresses the organs below the diaphragm. Then, as we exhale or deflate our lungs, the diaphragm moves upwards & releases them...thus creating a lovely compression and decompression massage effect on the organs. Think of the diaphragm as a wee trampoline. Why not take some time to explore this feeling either sitting with a straight back or lying flat and focusing on the movements your body naturally makes as you explore different lengths of your inhales and exhales. 

There are many different Pranayama practices each with their own set of instructions, contract-indications and benefits. It is always wise to learn Pranayama from a teacher before venturing out on your own. I would recommend one of my teachers, Marit Griffith, beautifully instructing the full yoga breath as a great starting point or come to a class and learn more!
In asana or physical yoga practice it is good practice to work on the meridian lines that stimulate the organs for this time of year - the lungs & large intestine - which mainly run along the front and back of the arms. We should bring more emphasis to the breath as the breath leads movement accentuating the fact that we never sacrifice the breath for a posture.

  • Time of year: October, November, December

  • Begins: 21st October

  • Element: Metal

  • Linked organs: Lungs and Large Intestine

  • Energy: Slowing

  • Nature: Gathering inward

  • Focus: The breath and movement

  • Our asana practice: Bringing our energy down


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