Yoga for the Spring Equinox
This year the Spring Equinox occurs at 21.58 on Wednesday 20th March. The midpoint between Winter and Summer, where day and night, light and darkness are in balance.
My yoga practice shifts and changes throughout the year, reflecting what is happening in the natural world around me. In the Winter it becomes a little quieter and more introspective. I feel the need to retreat and restore, to build my energy ready for the next cycle of Spring. In the Summer, my energy and my practice is more expansive.
So the Spring Equinox is an ideal time to shift any remaining Winter lethargy; to reawaken our energy; to sow the seeds for our growth and to encourage our blossoming transition into the next phase of the year.
In your yoga practice, think about techniques which cleanse and rejuvenate, which stimulate energy and vitality.
For me, this means cleansing breath practices like Kapalabhati (skull shining breath), a vigorous and warming Pranayama technique that stimulates and cleanses the body and mind.
I invigorate my physical asana practice and include more standing poses, balances and twists, to cleanse, strengthen and begin to shift the heavy kapha energy that, according to Ayurveda, accumulates over Winter.
I also include more backbends (which have an awakening, opening effect) and more inversions (which detox and energise).
Wherever you are in your yoga practice, there are versions of each of these types of poses that will enable you to feel the benefits while working within your own edges.
I also like to mark each transitional point of the year with ritual. For me that includes preparing a sacred space with elements of earth (spring flowers), air (incense), fire (candles) & water (with an uplifting Spring blend of essential oils). I smudge with white sage or palo santo, a technique used in many cultures of the world for thousands of years, to clear and cleanse. I then meditate, to reflect on and let go of what has been, and to set my Sankalpa (intentions) for the next phase.
Whatever you choose to do to mark the Spring Equinox with your yoga practice, wishing you love and light for this next cycle x