The art of adjustment IS just that, an art.
The Astanga practice really initiated this hands on assists method as part of this practice in good ways and some not so good. I am just writing about my perspective and feelings and experience with “assists” and like everything it has its down side and its had bad press. So here it is,my personal experience with it was truly amazing. When I received a good adjustment in asana, it would definitely take me some where I’d not been, in asana, in the moment, in my body. ! I fell in love with this experience, then I began to crave them. I would seek out the teachers who practised this in class , ( whom were very few and far between then and still is now ). I mean the kind of adjustment that leaves you transformed! I get it, some teachers are unsure of administering such a thing, as we have so much to consider now with suing and yoga related injury on the rise, why bother opening your self up to this vulnerable place? Ah, but for me it is such a joy to GIVE as I can feel the shifts, the energy releases when I give adjustments in my room. It is equally a transformative experience for me, the teacher, as it seems to be for the student. Maybe its because I personally LOVED adjustment, so much, whilst in class, I was super sensitive to the way it downloaded into my body and energetically . I simply felt THIS experience has to be shared, its so dam good!!!!
The technique when refined is so deeply transformative ,it assists in the opening of the body and is equally stabilising.When those special teacher’s came along and gave you an adjustment, it became deeply spiritual experience, am sure because of their energy field, intention,spiritual maturity and knowledge of the skill (sensitivity)which makes it so awesome to be on the receiving end!
But it takes times, it’s a special skill, it has to be understood, there are many facets of learning to it, you have refine your own skills of observation , sounds easy enough ? but no, one has to train ,your x-ray vision, your own spatial awareness, your own ability to trust (yourself) and awareness of how to use your own energy field as well as your physical body whilst giving assists..Then theres the physical mechanics, to give finely tuned support, touch rotation, how much lightness yet firmness you administer in your hands, the precision. Your presence !
Theres the different ranges of adjustment, verbal, passive, active and use of resistance, when to move in and when to back away. When to use the voice as the tool, body talk.The more you start practicing it the more you realise how powerful it is to have this tool as a yoga teacher, it really up’s your game and connection to the students. So much is non verbal and we learn theres so much information/wisdom in the field of non verbal awareness.I feel our bodies are so wise, merging with the wisdom of the asana and YOU as the adjuster is the magical combination !If one is tuned in , with clear intention to support the body , knowledge of the mechanics and asana , you will give your student the perfect amount of medicinal assists , and have them coming back craving more! I can see the bodies calling out now for the assists, however not always possible to to assist everyone every time, but little light energetic touches can be well received and also can be life (in asana) changing, trans-form, to change the form in the moment.Its a gift, a gift of space, light and energy ,bringing one towards real freedom! This Saturday febuary 16 th 2019 11-4 pm is a training for anyone interested in knowing more of this skillful art and their bodies potential and evolution yogasacredspace.com