R – Life is a Stretch

By Jodi Lee
Originally Published 2000
(see author/copyright info below)

: Elise Browning Miller and Carol Blackman
Published: Second Printing – 1999
Publisher: Llewellyn Publications
ISBN: 1-56718-067-1
Pages: 213

I must apologize up front, and right now for the brevity of this article. This book is an excellent resource for those wishing to know more of Yoga, however it is my experience (yup-experience) one should never practice yoga by oneself unless thoroughly experienced. One (yes, me) could end up with a pulled thigh muscle and in a fit of the giggles.

However, that said, I can go on to say that for a beginner such as myself, the step by step instructions with illustrations left me with an interest in learning more and I am hoping someone locally will begin a class.

The authors have very obviously put their hearts into “Life is a Stretch” and have no doubt researched the moves and stretches described for use in the office and while travelling. All positions seem to be covered, from Lotus to Sun Salutation.

So, in closing – Life is a Stretch is well worth the read – and the practice (and if you need a laugh, imagine me stuck in the “Sitting Hip Opener” pose, and giggling like an idiot ;-) )

I quote from Pg 115 – Downward Facing Dog

“Find a dining room-style chair, a folding chair, or a bench and place the heels of the hands on the front edge of the seat.

Walk your feet back far enough so that you are bending from the hips and your buttocks are lifted toward the ceiling, with your lower back in its natural curve. Your feet should be back farther than your hips. (Note from Jodi – there is an illustration in the book for this, however I could not find it on the Llewellyn site.)

Press down through your palms, particularly through the knuckles at the base of your index and middle fingers. Stretch up through your arms, spine, and pelvis to your buttocks bones as you stretch back and through your legs. Release your neck and head.

Breathe and hold for thirty seconds, building up to one minute. Be sure to bring your shoulder blades toward your chest and keep the lower back in its natural concave curve. If this is not possible, bend your knees, tilt your tailbone up, moving the shoulder blades toward your chest, bringing your lower back into its natural curve. As you practice, you will be able to slowly straighten your knees, keeping the alignment of your spine.

On an exhalation, walk the feet toward the chair. Inhale and release your hands.

Stand firmly on the floor, streatching your arms out to your sides and over your head. Then exhale and bring your arms down by your sides.”

Jodi Lee – is a freelance writer/editor living in southern Manitoba, Canada.
© 2000 – present All Rights Reserved; Republish notice excluded.

This article can be republished elsewhere in its entirety so long as the author is notified (see contact information), a link is provided to the website, and this notice is left intact.

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