Kundalini, Breath of Fire

One of the high points of visiting Dave & family for Thanksgiving holiday was checking out long-time family friend, Edwin Woods’ Friday morning Kundalini class at Spring of Happiness in Manlius NY. Greeted by teacher, Theone Wilkinis in her studio, I immediately relaxed and found “my space” on a blue mat in the corner. The ambiance and energy were friendly and supportive; a cd of Wahe Guru chants drifted in the background adding aural comfort to the setting.

What was most different for me from classes I teach or attend, was the practice of Breath of Fire (Bhastrika) during most of the poses. Breathing in this manner required great mental focus, not to mention abdominal control. In addition to helping us maintain a meditative mindset, the rapid fire breath work had many physical benefits. We all built up a lot of heat, evidenced by our sweating — and the steamy windows lining the studio wall.

Recently, I was told (by my orthopedist) to strengthen my quads, so I appreciated the other work we did, such as leg lifts and warrior 2. Practicing Breath of Fire during Warrior 2 is a pose I look forward to playing with on my own. It was challenging, but focusing on the forward thumb really helped “keep me there.” The class recharged my batteries and by the time savasana rolled around, I was feeling mellow and centered.

Thanks Theone!

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