There is a plethora of images in fitness magazines and on Instagram that display air-brushed models with flat and toned tummies. All of these images suggest that a taught belly is an ideal to strive for. Defined abdominal muscles are a point of vanity and the existence of a six-pack is synonymous with a strong core. A six pack is a physical iteration of a strong core, but they are not mutually exclusive. A strong core is possible in the absence of a six-pack and a six pack is possible in the absence of a strong core.
Core strength in the context of a yoga practice is the union of physical strength and emotional strength. Physical core strength is necessary for steadiness in a yoga practice, good posture and vitality and safety in backbends. Emotional core strength refers to the power to know and follow through on your fundamental beliefs. Your core beliefs are the ethical essence that makes you, you. The physical core strength endows you with the ability to safely do the activities and sports you want to. The emotional core strength provides you with the fortitude to act on your innermost values.
By understanding your core from a multidimensional point of view, you’ll strengthen your back, abs and thighs, but also begin to understand your purpose and eventually tune in to your highest Self.
It is an unfortunate obsession that we have with flat abs: attaching vanity to the body’s midsection is not helpful for physical or spiritual growth. By viewing the abdomen as something that needs to be whipped into shape and judging it by its appearance, we feel shame when it doesn’t look the way we think it “should.” By attempting to sculpt your abs or flatten your belly for the sake of vanity, you risk suffering when you are unable to attain a certain look.
Yoga is a venue for checking in with your physical and spiritual self. The core is a good place to start. Instead of using a Core Yoga practice to support vanity, embrace the properties of injury prevention and spinal health of the practice. Instead of viewing your core as a six-pack in the making, practice thinking of your core as a multidimensional manifestation of you. True core strength is the embodiment of your purpose. It is about being physically and emotionally strong so that you can follow through on the things and ideas that are important to you.
Taiga Yoga is pleased to introduce a new Core Yoga class!
Tuesdays and Thursdays 10-1045am
Meet you on the Mat.