Updated: Sep 22
As I write this, it's late April. Isn't this time of year wonderful?!
The trees are blossoming or bursting into leaf bud. The spring bulbs are still on good form, with beautiful tulips, hyacinths and narcissi sprouting up in all the gardens. There are actually a lot of wild (or escaped?) daffodils in the woods near my home, and I enjoy going to walk between them on a sunny spring afternoon. I also enjoy the game of identifying a tree by its blossom, so I can look forward to what it might have to offer later in the year (apples, plums or cherries perhaps?).
At this time of year, trees and plants start to come out of themselves and show the world their potential, or give us a suggestion of what's in store further down the line. It's a wonderful thing, to witness something so vibrant, new, often scented and sometimes colourful bursting out of what only recently appeared to be lifeless and bleak. It's a pleasure of life to see the spring really start to break out around me.
The same thing can happen in your yoga practice, too.
Perhaps it's too often considered that you need to have been practicing yoga for a long time in order for your practice to develop. This is not necessarily the case!
Even for complete beginners, a yoga practice might start to blossom as soon as they step onto the mat and begin to relate to their body and senses in a way that feels 'right'.
At any point during our practice, we might notice something new, helpful or intriguing about ourselves to use as a point of growth, either in yoga or more broadly in life.
Blossoming in yoga is, in theory, available for anyone who cares- or dares- to practice. We begin to see the changes and patterns of our lives, bodies, minds and emotions and can take hold of something deeply rooted or nurture new shoots with intention.
We might start to realise where we're habitually holding tension in our bodies and be able to relate to the injuries or challenges that surround it. We may eventually be able to release that tension and come into a more comfortable existence, either by active softening and relaxation (e.g. during savasana) or by taking action in other areas of life to improve health and wellbeing.
We might also start to realise where we need to strengthen ourselves, perhaps emotionally, physically or energetically in order to develop our yoga practice in a direction that seems right. We might do this directly through yoga, or seek out other means.
These are all ways of growing, developing and showing ourselves our potential, that indicate blossoming in yoga.
You don't need to know all the poses or even think that you do them "well" to be able to start blossoming with your practice. These things come and go with time in any case (for example, my Uttanasana or forward folds feel SO different after leg day at the gym, and I can no longer hold lotus pose/ Padmasana like I could when I was 20). Understanding where YOU are in the pose, in your body, in your emotions, thoughts and feelings as you practice may begin some blossoming in you.
Here's to spring, and new growth!