Yoga and the elements - Water - Apas

What words spring to mind when you think about water?

  • Flowing, fluidity, movement, energy, stillness, balance, powerful, dance, malleable, cohesive, shapeshifter, adaptable, powerful.

Water is everywhere.

Our bodies are made of over 60% water. 72% of the earth’s surface is covered in water. It’s the blood of the earth. It’s our blood. Water has an incredible power to shapeshift. Pour water from one vessel to the other and see it change before our eyes. Compare water in nature, a thundering waterfall may eventually subside into a calm stretch of river. Wake up to a misty morning, and then get pelted by a hail storm a few hours later.

The amazing duality of this element makes it perfect to practice balance. A huge struggle in our modern lives. How often have we heard each other say: I need to find the balance. Whether that’s in work and home life, parenthood and friendships,  your own desires and helping the greater good, doing what you love and doing what you must. Take stock of what needs balancing in your life. The first step is always being aware, understanding why you feel imbalanced.

Then we can work to find an equilibrium.

Water flows to its own rhythm. And we each have a uniqueness in the way that we move. In a water yoga practice find your own rhythm, let your breathe guide you, and listen to your intuition. Sometimes this isn’t easy in a public class, but yoga is here for us to explore our own sense of freedom in movement. Look around you at all the different shapes and sizes. We’re all too different to move the same.There’s a beauty in that.

The very thing that makes water a wonderful element to connect with - its adaptability - can induce feelings of fearfulness and insecurity when it’s out of balance. All water needs boundaries. To be contained. Or we’ll lose the shape of our true selves.

The organs we focus on in Water practice are the urinary bladder and the kidneys. These organs help us eliminate any toxins, anything we don’t need from the body. It means this is a great practice or purifying and cleansing your whole system.