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When Downward Dog is Done...


Is Downward Dog really ever done?

I used to think that it would be. That I get to a day where, almost like checking something off a list, I'd be done with it. I kept waiting for the time when I would go into Downdog and it would be "easy", when it would feel like that "resting pose" I heard teachers allude to. But that day never came.

For years I was frustrated because I was waiting for the end ... and I love to check things off lists. It took me many years to realize yoga is not about getting to the end of something. As soon as I was able to let go of the idea of "finishing" I was able to be much more present to what was happening moment to moment. I was able to see and experience what was actually happening rather than what I wanted to happen.

In that moment Downdog stopped being something I had to have power over and become vehicle to bring me into relationship with my body. I started to relish the possibility that every time I practiced down dog there would be something new to explore and experience. Ultimately it made my practice so much more interesting and meaningful. It took something that I thought I'd move though and get board with in a few years to not just a lifelong practice but a lifestyle.

Over 20 years later Downward Dog gives me a brand new experience every time I practice and I would not want it any other way. And now I'm just as interested in living my yoga off the mat as I am practicing my yoga on the mat.

Truly the practices on the mat are a microcosm of how one has a relationship not just with a body but with the world.


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