Dancing Warrior: A Humble Yoga Sequence Teaches Strength

Kathryn Budig by Kathryn Budig | September 21st, 2011 | 6 Comments
topic: Personal Growth, Yoga

Dancing Warrior

No matter what
No matter where
It’s always home
If love is there.

I grew up with this quote hanging on our kitchen wall. As a little girl, I admired the fine needlework (yes, I grew up in Kansas) rather than the actual message embedded in the thread. As I’ve grown in life and with my yoga practice, I’ve come to fully understand the power behind this simple message. Home and comfort reside in the small things, and love is magically woven into every crevice of our lives when we learn to let go of the story we’re telling ourselves and open our eyes.

This is a huge lesson in my teachings as a yoga instructor. I encourage students to move through fear to reach the other side — love. Love is home, and it’s something ingrained that can be easily accessed once we acknowledge its existence.

Creating Aim True Yoga was a dream come true, colored with a multitude of challenges. How could I convey my thoughts on what it means to ‘aim true’ through a physical yoga practice accessible to anyone who decides to push play?

I started with defining what ‘aim true’ means to me. I aim true by starting every day with intention and gratitude for who I am, what I have to offer and where I want to go in this life. I stick to these beliefs regardless of the judgments of others and stay committed in my quest for happiness. Then I sought to infuse this way of thinking into each posture. I worked through many approaches and sequences until I found a sequence that always makes me feel at home — Dancing Warrior.

Dancing Warrior

The Dancing Warrior sequence consists of four standing poses: Warrior One, Warrior Two, Reverse Warrior and Side Angle Pose. These postures are the bread and butter of the standing sequence and can literally remind someone how to find their roots and stand strong.

When held, each posture creates a strong demand for strength all the way from the base of our buildings. The first thing to go is the legs — the thighs begin to shake. Our foundation begins to flounder and the easy and immediate reaction is get out. Our brain goes into rescue mode because discomfort has entered the equation. Before you know it, the mind is absorbed in escape strategies instead of breathing through the chaos.

Warrior poses are here to challenge us. I kindly think of these postures as therapists — they force us to look at the demons in our minds instead of spinning on our heel like a bat out of hell. If you can work through the full body trembles of Warrior by letting go of the story you’re telling yourself — that you need to escape — and instead riding it out through your breathing, you can handle anything that comes your way throughout the day. An irritable coworker, a grumpy mother or a demanding spouse? Simply remember the strength that you garnered to make it through your Dancing Warrior and suddenly the onslaught of daily life is bearable.

Dancing Warrior HeartThis is what it is to aim true — learning to observe without rash reaction. Choosing to stick to your beliefs and what makes your heart beat, even when all you want to do is run and hide. Realizing that home resides in comfort and discomfort and that the mixture makes us who we are. Facing fear knowing darn well that love is waiting to embrace you on the other side. All of this can manifest from the physical discipline of the Dancing Warrior practice.

So aim true. Be bold, live loud, explore fearlessly and love without bounds … and dance.

Try Kathryn’s four-minute Warrior Yoga Flow Sequence — a free clip from her new Aim True Yoga DVD.

Take a class with Kathryn on our new streaming video site, Gaiam TV!

Comments

  1. If only I could stop the story I’m telling myself…
    then I’d be an authentic warrior

    Joe Barry | September 21st, 2011 | Comment Permalink
  2. This article was just what I needed today! Just what everyone needs to think about. Peace, love, and gratitude

    Michele dovell | September 22nd, 2011 | Comment Permalink
  3. I grew up in Nebraska and can totally relate Good background we have. I believe some of my ‘warrior strength’ is because of that influence.

    Joanne | September 22nd, 2011 | Comment Permalink
  4. Joe, I wanted to tell you the story you are telling yourself that you want to stop is a false thought. It is put there by the ego to cause chaos and pain. Remember that every time you hear it in your head, it’s a false thought. :) xxx ooo

    Tonya | September 22nd, 2011 | Comment Permalink
  5. What a beautiful sequence, and a beautiful sequence of thoughts that inspired it. Thank you, Kathryn, for your eloquence – verbal and physical. I look forward to adding Dancing Warrior to my practice.

  6. really nice sequence, mingled with really really nice sensations!
    thx alot

    narges | December 25th, 2013 | Comment Permalink

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