Evolving Practice

This entry was posted on Mar 31, 2010 by Charlotte Bell.

Having practiced yoga for more than half my 54 years, I’ve watched a gradual evolution in the focus and spirit of my practice. When I began in my 20s, even though I knew that yoga was not supposed to be about competition, my practice was nonetheless about achieving “advanced” poses. Over the years I’ve watched my passion shift to the more subtle pleasures of practice, in particular pranayama and meditation along with an emphasis on staying in poses for long periods. I still do active, strengthening practice; I just don’t flit from one pose to the next, and I no longer feel the need to do extreme poses, even though my body is willing. My practice is much simpler now. I practice fewer poses in a session, and I give each pose time to unfold and transform. How has your practice changed over time?

About Charlotte Bell
Charlotte Bell discovered yoga in 1982 and began teaching in 1986. Charlotte is the author of Mindful Yoga, Mindful Life: A Guide for Everyday Practice and Yoga for Meditators, both published by Rodmell Press. Her third book is titled Hip-Healthy Asana: The Yoga Practitioner’s Guide to Protecting the Hips and Avoiding SI Joint Pain (Shambhala Publications). She writes a monthly column for CATALYST Magazine and serves as editor for Yoga U Online. Charlotte is a founding board member for GreenTREE Yoga, a non-profit that brings yoga to underserved populations. A lifelong musician, Charlotte plays oboe and English horn in the Salt Lake Symphony and folk sextet Red Rock Rondo, whose DVD won two Emmy awards in 2010.