Connecting the mind, body, and breath with awareness is a key understanding of mindfulness. In previous blogs, I have discussed the belly breathing meditation and the body scan meditation. Today I will be taking mindfulness to the mat with Hatha Yoga. Yogi Swatmarama introduced Hatha Yoga in the 15th century. It combines posture movements with conscious breathing and helps increases focus and awareness.I first read about Hatha Yoga in Jon Kabat-Zinn’s book, Full Catastrophe Living. Before I started this meditation, I was judging the process and was intimidated of my perceived vision of yoga. I really paid attention to utilizing the beginners mind, one of the seven attitudes of mindfulness. For a couple of weeks, I practiced the poses from the book. This then led to a group session of Hatha Yoga in my Mindful Leadership class. After this class, I started adding this type of mindful meditation to my “mindfulness time” several times a week. I enjoyed the opportunity to have another variety of mindfulness to practice and how it incorporated movements with the breath.
Jon Kabat-Zinn describes Hatha Yoga as, “mobilizing our ability to cultivate embodied wisdom and self-compassion; and by so doing it teaches us to live our life and face whatever arises with integrity, clarity, and open-hearted presence.” After a couple of months of practicing Hatha Yoga, this quote has become a reality to me in my daily life. There is a flowing awareness with my mind, body, and breath. It guides me to a harmonious place and allows me to see life with a beginners mind during my practice and in my daily interactions and challenges.
YouTube has several videos with guided Hatha Yoga Practice. Here is a beginners Hatha Yoga video below from health psychologist, Dr. Lynn Rossy:
Try incorporating Hatha Yoga into your mindfulness routine once or twice a week. Let me know your thoughts on this practice. Please follow me on Twitter.