Alignment and Injuries,  Ashtanga Adaptability,  Ashtanga Quotes,  Reblogs,  Teaching Ashtanga

Words of Wisdom For those on the Ashtanga Yoga Path

A friend posted this and I wanted to share it. Great advice for the Ashtanga journey from David Swenson


* I want you to understand, the Ashtanga Yoga can be practiced for the rest of your life. You can enjoy this practice.


About Yoga

* This mat should be the place we come to free ourselves from all the stresses of the world. Don’t make it another place to be stress to you.

* The mat is like a loving mother; The practice is a loving place.

* If you enjoy your practice today, you will want to practice tomorrow. No one has to tell you.

* Keep it simple. It’s only yoga. Don’t make it too complicated.

About Asana

* Let the practice do its work. Don’t become obsessed with one asana.
* There is a big picture; a lot of other asanas will help you with this one asana.
* Everyone will find asanas that for them are easier and asanas that are harder. Treat them all with an equal mind.


About Time

* The best time of the practice is the time of the day that you can practice.
* You find your life style and think about how to fit the yoga into your day.

About Food

* If you really practice ashtanga yoga, you have to eat, you need fuel for your body, but everyone will find different fuel.
* We start becoming aware of our body and how we feel without anyone telling you.
* You start to discover certain foods make you feel better but other foods make you feel heavy. I think it’s a natural progression.

About Injury

* If someone becomes injured from yoga, they are doing something wrong.
* The main reason to practice any style of yoga is to increase prana in our body. Prana means positive life force. Take that energy and go out and make the world better place.
* Somehow if you become injured from yoga, don’t feel bad about yourself, just change your practice.
* Injury should be avoided, and you should use your practice to heal yourself.
* Do not ignore pain. We have pain in our body to tell us something is wrong. You have to listen to your body. It will speak to you.
* If you focus on your breath, listen to your body, you will not get hurt.
* If you get injured by a teacher, immediately tell that teacher they hurt you so they know.

—David Swenson@Pure Yoga Studio, June 19 (recorded by Fannie)

Shanna Small has been practicing Ashtanga Yoga and studying the Yoga Sutras since 2001. She has studied in Mysore with Sharath Jois and is the Director of AYS Charlotte, a school for traditional Ashtanga in Charlotte NC. She has written for Yoga International and the Ashtanga Dispatch. Go here for more information on AYS Charlotte. For information on workshops, please e-mail

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