Monday, April 29, 2013

Yogic Lifstyle Teacher Support: Divine Alignment with Adi Singh

Adi Singh highly recommends the book Divine Alighment by Guru Prem Singh Khalsa

Around the middle of March, 2013, Yoga Phoenix started offering Yogic Lifestyle Teacher Support, which is a series of special events designed to support Kundalini Yoga teachers. As a teacher myself, I always feel that it is very important to keep studying and learning about this wonderful ancient technology, jumped at the opportunity and attended Divine Alignment by Adi Singh. Little did I know, it turned out to be a great review of the basics and the refresher was most welcomed.  

We began by reviewing the three locks: root lock, diaphragm lock, and neck lock, covered back in Level 1 Teachers’ Training. Adi Singh demonstrated some exercises that may help students with the mechanics of Kundalini Yoga basics. For example, have students lie down on their backs and then apply root lock. This way, they will be able to feel the spine being lengthen and become straight. Another good exercise is to combine spinal flex with root lock. Have students inhale and push lower spine forward while holding root lock. As the spine flexes to the back, release the root lock. This exercise is also good for the lower back!

After reviewing the locks, we moved on to breath work. Adi Singh provided a lot of tips on how students should practice their breath work and how teachers can provide guidance. For instance, applying root lock can help students learn to breathe through the belly. Adi Singh shared a very simple exercise that tests how healthy a person is. First, breathe long and deep a few times. Then exhale completely and hold the breath out for as long as one can. Adi Singh said that the ability to hold the breath out for over 30 seconds is an indicator of good health (I made it past 30 seconds!). If one can hold the breath out for one minute that means this person is in tiptop shape!  

Of all the breath work in Kundalini Yoga, I think most students will find breath of fire the most challenging to learn. Adi Singh shared a few ideas on how to teach breath of fire. Most importantly, he helped me understand how all these techniques help open the gateway to the central channel (sushmuna), allowing the kundalini energy to rise to the top of the head and then come back down.

We spent the rest of the evening doing some meditation and discussing the role of a teacher.  Adi Singh pointed out that in a way the teacher is the ideal that students try to achieve. As teachers, we must continue our learning and keep refining our practice, but at the same time remain humble. I want to thank Adi Singh for imparting this piece of wisdom with me; I was very glad to have attended the event.

Yoga Phoenix will continue to offer more special events like this to support Kundalini Yoga teachers. Don’t miss out on these valuable learning opportunities. Yogic Lifestyle Teacher Support takes place every 4th Tuesday of the month, at 7 pm.

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