As a studio owner, I field many calls from new beginners wanting to start the practice of yoga. Usually after some questions later, we decide on some appropriate classes for them to attend, depending on what their needs are at that moment. Meeting with a new client after a class this week, she mentioned to me that she hoped she wouldn’t be sore tomorrow. But this is not how yoga works. Let me explain.
All of you is Energy. When you are healthy, the energy circulates throughout the body, cleaning away waste, repairing and maintaining cells and tissues. This energy flows through all of your organs, cells. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, or TCM, you were born with a self-healing ability, and through the use of movement or other ways, you can recharge that self-healing function in your body. Yoga holds this same belief. These asanas or postures can balance your energy, or Qi, giving you the healing support it needs to regain its healthy function.
Deep inside, hidden inside your muscles, organs, really, your whole body is a recording of all the past events and emotions that you have felt in the past. According to Chinese Medicine, emotional activity is considered a normal healthy functioning response to external stimuli, and does not cause problems within normal limits. However, when emotions become so powerful that they overwhelm a person they cause serious injury to the internal organs, and open the door to disease later on in life. You may not think this is you, but how many of us become upset when somebody slow pulls out in front of us when we are driving? How many of us cry when we see a hallmark commercial? If we can’t control ourselves, and some of us respond in anger or tears, then this emotion goes to the liver or lungs. Here are some emotions and their different pathways to organs…..
- Joy (referring to over-excitement rather than contentment) Heart
- Anger Liver
- Pensiveness Spleen
- anxiety Large Intestine
- fear Kidneys
- fright Initially the heart, but chronic it moves to kidneys
- grief Lungs
Therefore, when we start a yoga practice, we begin to restore function to the organs and the energy pathways throughout the body. This will make you sore. Some of the soreness comes from muscles being used, that have been sleeping for awhile. Other soreness comes from moving the energy in the body. Both are good for you, and let you know the yoga is working on you! Rejoice! You will know the yoga is working when you are sore. This soreness happens alot in your first years of regular practicing. After that, it takes dedication to the practice and attention to the little details of alignment to uncover some of these deep pathways. It is all in the journey.
See you on the mat,