Flowing Freestyle

January 25, 2021

Your yoga practice doesn’t have to be a super choreographed routine (unless you want it to be). Flowing intuitively can be a profoundly important part of one’s practice. It can teach us to trust our inner voice and to act upon our intuition - after all, we are the experts of our own experiences.

I felt a surge of empowerment upon having reached a point in my practice where I could lose the structure of a class to freestyle. To me, flowing intuitively meant listening to my needs and meeting those needs on the mat - expanding where I wanted to expand, taking my time - trusting myself.

To flow intuitively, allow your breath to be your guide, set an intention, and do what feels good.

Breath is the essence of yoga. Take the pressure out of your practice with the knowledge that just by synchronizing your breath and movement, you are practicing yoga. I like to picture my breath as the physical expression of my soul. But beyond the esoteric, your breath promotes circulation in your body, links yoga postures, and allows for tension to ease from your muscles.

I like to start with Cat/Cow pose to establish my breath as my guide. On your hands and knees, you have the visual of a baby (sometimes we have to crawl before we can fly). With a neutral spine and straight neck, bring attention to your breath. When you're ready, exhale into Cat and then inhale into Cow - really taking your time, taking note of any built up tension, aches or pains, or where your body may be buzzing with energy.

Flowing Freestyle l Mukha Yoga

This image features Manduka's eKO Lite Yoga Mat

From Cat/Cow, you can allow a little dance, maybe inviting Extended Child’s pose or Upward Facing Dog. Inhaling and exhaling your way from pose to pose - never forcing or rushing anything, and taking the time to allow your mind to become quiet as you settle into your body. And while at the beginning phase of your flow, identify your intention. What do you want to invite into your mind and body at this very moment?

And once you're ready, with the rhythm of your breath guiding you - inhale your way to Downward Facing Dog, and then allow your body to tell you what it wants to do next. Maybe an energizing Sun Salutation variation? Maybe flip your dog to then rest into heart openers? The choice is yours.

Pro tip: If a stretch calls your name - go for it! It doesn’t have to be a formal yoga pose for it to be meaningful to you in your yoga practice. Most importantly, trust yourself and have fun.

Namaste, friends.

Hannah Parks l Mukha YogaBy Hannah Parks; All Rights Reserved @2021

Hannah Parks l Mukha YogaBy Hannah Parks; All Rights Reserved @2021

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