Many yogis such as Ana Forrest have suggested that inflexibility in the body can also be a reflection of rigidity within the mind, and that a tendency to be very tight in our movements is a great mirror for witnessing our habituated, worn out thoughts and responses to life.
I don’t think Forrest and other yoga guides are suggesting that looking like corkscrews during yoga must mean we have incredibly spacious minds–
Instead, I think what’s really meant is that we have the power to influence the fluidity in the body (and the mind to influence the body) by the way we direct our thoughts:
“Oh, I’m just not that coordinated,” “I’m too old for that stuff,” “Are you kidding?,” “It’s for people who started at a really young age,” “This is just what happens to the body when we age!,” or “back issues run in my family.”
It’s an amazing thing to finally recognize the impact of the body/ mind connection. And even better to learn to apply it.
Interrupt the mind’s usually unaware responses to the body, to others, and to life, by staying alert to old habits: the knee-jerk responses, illogical patterns and thoughts. With awareness, a new road starts to take shape and the former path starts to grow over the old footprints.
Take the yoga class. Question the first response. Go a different route.
And think about what’s possible.