For much of the time I’ve lived in Arizona (minus the COVID era), I’ve taken yoga from Peaches, a 72 year old tall, thin woman who is the very definition of lithesome. Saturday mornings, I envision myself the same until I try and assume positions that remind me I am not lithesome. Oh well.
“Let’s set an intention of flexibility today.“
Peaches recently introduced us to her new Abyssinian bowl that comes in its own carrying case. I couldn’t help but think of my mother’s old hat boxes when I saw it. At the start of each session, she cautions folks with hearing aids to adjust the volume, then gently strikes the bowl with a wooden mallet, and as the mallet moves around the bowl, it makes a delightful sound. In the key of D.
“Close your eyes and focus on your brow point.“
This is our warm up before the music transitions to pre-recorded soothing sounds. We also end the class with the same gentle tones from the bowl.
“Release the tension in your shoulders and your hips.“
I don’t know what strikes me funny about this, but it never occurred to me that singing bowls, which I’ve learned these are called, were tuned to any particular pitch.
“Reach just until you feel the stretch.“
To be honest, I’ve never been exposed to singing bowls. Growing up in the 50’s-60’s, I transitioned from playing the recorder to the flute, and singing bowls and mallets were not part of our music department.
“Push out through the heels.“
But maybe they should be part of a school’s curriculum. There are many health benefits besides relaxation attributed to their use including the reduction of anger, depression and anxiety. Can you imagine what that would do for kids? Or adults?
“Listen to your body.“
Maybe they can be part of a daily health routine for adults to help combat chronic pain, improve sleep and reduce blood pressure.
“Open your heart center.“
I’m not suggesting any of you rush out and order your own singing bowl. But next time you’re feeling stressed, just darken the room, put on comfy clothes and stretch while listening to some of the following songs all written in the key of D.
“With or Without You” by U2
“Maybe I’m Amazed” by Paul McCartney
“Thinking out Loud” by Ed Sheeran.
“Hotel California” by the Eagles
“Love Story” by Taylor Swift
“Summer of ’69” by Bryan Adams.
Love, Peace and Light.