Root for my security and stability...
Sacral and Solar to revive and ignite my energy...
Throat to keep my damn mouth shut somedays.
These are easy, right? Well sometimes.
I have been hushed as a teacher...
"I am trying to engage my mula bandha...don't distract me.
There are others as well?"
We often have to hyper focus to learn to activate our far reaching limbs...especially if our proprioception needs a little tweaking.
Pada Banda ignites the feet and legs... even those cute glutes! It ties in the lower body, unites the entire system and brings power and stability to a pose.
I got so tickled last week when my friend said he loved my feet. (My "flintstone feet" as they were dubbed by friends at a young age and I grew to self loathe). I asked if he was crazy and he said you are always flexing your feet and spreading your toes.
Once you purposefully start to use your bandhas, the body remembers them. This muscle memory kicks into action after a while and begins to stabilize you without a thought or pointed focus, whether you are in a pose, climbing trees or piggy backing your child!
Did you know Hasta Bandha does the same for the hands and arms. It activates the lats and SA, the pecs and biceps.
Did you know you can actually deepen your breaths by engaging Hasta Bandha. I teach an active Hasta Bandha in Tree pose for eample to still the wavering upper body. These aforementioned upper body breathing accessory muscles, expand the rib cage and ... that's right, give your lungs more room to do what they do best.
And with more breath, we have more life force.
True unification is beginning to learn to use these "other locks" more effectively in our practice.
Imagine Half Moon/Kite Pose becoming more stable by flexing, spreading the toes and pressing thru the big toe mound. That shaky lower body that makes you fearful you will fall on your face, now becomes solid and strong...yes... by just using your feet!
I see many of my students struggle with arm balances. They believe it is all arm strength and brute force.
Try pulling together the whole body next time. It may be that all you need for that lift off, is a little foot engagement!
This is YOUR body.
Take control of it and just see what happens!