The Power of Pace

07 April 2011 | By Tania Ketenjian | 1 Comment

We all move at different paces. You can really get a sense of that when you’re hanging out with a close friend. Sometimes you wish they went faster, other times slower because as we all know, our energy and the ways in which we move our bodies varies so much from person to person. This becomes particularly evident in class because the teacher sets a pace. And I love that because it’s great to be moving at the same pace as others, breathing in at the same time, being in downward facing dog at the same time, and doing something collectively. I mean that is a big part of practice, or it has become one since yoga moved further away from one teacher, one student, to one teacher, many students.

At the same time, there are moments in class when we are invited to go through salutations or positions at our own pace and it’s amazing to see how different each person practices. This is important because one of the foundations of class is really being aware of your body, the way it moves, and what it needs. Often in class you’ll hear the invitation to go at your own pace rest when you need to and just listen to the messages your body is giving you. No need to be at the same pace as others, or to even follow exactly what the teacher is saying. Really listening and being aware of your own pace can help you on and off the mat.

One Comment on “The Power of Pace”

  1. After I took the Inversion Conversion class I learned that I was a mouth breather. Well the pace you use for yoga is generally governed by inhalations and exhalations through your nose. Since then I’ve been working at breathing thru my nose with an inhale or exhale for each movement. Add in a little cardio (like a flow class) and I find myself trying to breath thru my ears to get the needed breath to continue. Every pose is to be accompanied by breath so its really your breath that guides your pace. I’m thankful we have instructors telling us how to breath, I just wish they’d tell me to inhale more often.


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