The role of the abdominal area in asana and pranayama practice is much more varied, complex, and interesting than it is the more conventional physical exercises. This area, with its musculature, organs, nerve plexiglass, and the more esoteric control centres, is recognised as not just a ‘structural’ component whose musculature needs to be kept toned, but also an important physiological, endocrine, nervous and emotional centre. When a practitioner further moves on to pranayama practices, the abdominal area is regarded as a more important locus for the breath than the heart/ lung (chest) area. Any component that is so important, is also very sensitive, and imbalances can creep in easily. In our practice we have to balance the ‘firming’ and ‘strengthening’ aspects with the ‘quietening’, ‘softening’ and ‘deflating’ actions in the abdominal area. The word ‘Core’ takes on a completely different meaning here!
In this series of asana classes, we explore these connections from various perspectives.