"Our “falling off the bike scars.”
A faithful yoga practice will eventually heal the deepest of physical scars, but it can also tend to those emotional “falling off the bike” scars, too. I’ve discovered yoga, if you allow it, will press its thin, little fingers into those knots, working deftly, almost secretly. You don’t even realize you’re letting go of negative thoughts regarding this or that person or exhaling resentment, sadness, confusion, stress, as you stretch your entire body apart. You can’t see that your heart is actually pushing away small demons with each steadfast beat, that each drop of sweat running down your neck and hamstrings is one more toxin you can leave on that studio floor.
But then, afterwards, when you do realize what’s happening and how much lighter, freer and happier you feel, those relentless, prodding fingers become as important to your practice as the heat, your water bottle, the very feet on which you stand facing yourself in the mirror. The “internal massage” I give myself each class as I compress my limbs and my organs in myriad ways is nothing to me now if I don’t also leave the studio feeling as though I’ve massaged my mind, rubbing away tension, soothing frayed nerves, smoothing out the day’s wrinkles.
I’ve fallen off many bikes in my lifetime, sometimes jumping right to my feet, brushing off the dirt, laughing, thinking how silly and clumsy I am. Other times, I’ve spent years picking the stones out of my kneecaps.
In the studio, it doesn’t matter where you got your scars. We’re each cut up and on the mend in our own individual ways. What matters is that we’re all aiming to heal ourselves, carefully, gently.
And then, of course, looking to climb right back onto the bike seat for another ride.
The still moment." -Marique Newell