getting high + staying free: the real deal of body rolling

Everyone’s tight, and everyone’s achy. Even while teaching my yoga class, I see people trying to add a little neck stretch, I see them wincing in pain as they try to force themselves to be more flexible then they are. As a yoga teacher, no matter what I teach or what kind of encouragement I offer, I know that there is only so far that one class can go in terms of unravelling the chronic tension my students are coming in with. Plus – I see many students actually deepening their tension in the way they are choosing to perform the yoga asanas. Oh my goodness!

Enter Yamuna Body Rolling (YBR) – a release technique that I have been teaching and practising for nearly 18 years. We use specially designed balls, and a sequence of focussed routines to unwind the whole body. I mean the whole body – cranium to feet. Here are a few things about YBR that make it so effective:

we do the feet

It seems obvious, but the feet are holding a lot of tension, and it’s the root of so many patterns that restrict movement – so, getting on to the feet first sets off a much deeper release.

it’s systematic

It’s not just rolling around on balls because it feels good to put pressure on ‘that place’ like we do at home with the tennis ball. YBR is working through sequences of muscles and joints in a particular order to ensure release in a far more comprehensive way.

not a foam roller

I know, we love the foam roller, but the ball is a whole other world. Two main reasons: the first is that the ball is round (duh!), so you can ANGLE into places the foam roller can’t reach. Second, the ball is full of air, which mirrors the hydrostatic pressure of the body and the cells in structure. The ‘give’ the ball has, that the foam roller doesn’t, is much more like the ‘give’ of your own body. That mirroring of structure means a more lasting release.

getting ‘to the bone’

Instead of just addressing the soft tissue, we spend time on the bone itself and work out from there. This makes for a powerful release; one that has a much deeper effect on the nervous system.

we re-pattern

It’s not just release, but it’s also retraining the muscles to stay longer and work more harmoniously as one.

integrate back into the spine

We always close our work with the spine, creating space and length there. It feels SO good, but it also helps us to ‘re-centre’ and allows the body to ‘remember’ the release, in such a way that each time we roll, we deepen the more aligned pattern in body memory.

reaching the cranium + jaw

We will work on the reaching the cranial and a deep jaw release in my daylong workshop at triyoga.

YBR is best practised and shared with a whole day, so I offer just a few daylong events to get us to those crucial measures with deeper ease. I hope you can join me for the next daylong of body rolling.

Leila combines lightness of heart with vibrant intelligence in ways that keep opening doors for her students. Empowered by 17 years of her own yoga practice, 14 years of practising therapeutic work in the body, a love of language, and a lifelong freewheeling sense of fun, Leila has developed a straight-forward and uplifting style of teaching that supports people in opening to their highest potential.

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