The Yellow Kite team are lucky to have two yoga teachers in the building. Kathryn and Emily offer classes before and after work, so if we’re feeling super stressed it’s a short trip to some inner calm. Of course, as the publishers of Rachel Brathen’s Yoga Girl, we were interested to hear what they made of the book. They both used it to try to improve some postures they have found problematic- we think they look pretty perfect!
A handstand (Adho Mukha Vrksasana) was always one of those yoga poses I looked at in awe. As Rachel is the Queen of Handstands, I studied many of her videos, she makes it look so effortless, yet I struggled so much. I became obsessed with the right technique.
I’ve been an avid follower of @YogaGirl pretty much since Instagram started, her posts have always filled me with inspiration and courage, she always seems to post something that summed up my feelings. I concentrated on channelling her inspiring words, never giving up and trying all the techniques she talks about in her blogs, social media and her book.
Finally after years of trying… finally… finally, magic happened, I could hold a handstand (even if it is only for several breaths). Everyone has to start somewhere and it’s called a yoga practise for a reason.
Pincha Mayurasana (forearm stand) has been an ongoing project for me for a while – and, as you can see, it’s still a work in progress. I know from other inversion poses how incredible that feeling of weightlessness – of flight – can be, not to mention the sense of achievement when you manage something you weren’t at all sure was possible.
Rachel’s tips and instructions have been really helpful in terms of finessing my alignment, and knowing which muscles I need to build and engage. But what I love best about her book and her message is the reminder that being able to stand on your head or tie yourself into a bow is not the point of yoga. Keeping going when things are challenging; being able to shut off negative internal (or external) voices; finding stillness within in the midst of chaos; believing in endless possibilities: this is the work. This is what yoga is all about.