Preparing the Ground

By April 24, 2020 PRACTICE No Comments

Taught by Dana Iova-Koga

When we are going to plant a garden or a tree, we usually do some work before hand to prepare. The “work” can be as simple as identifying the best place for the plant to go- where it will get adequate sun and space. Sometimes we do a bit of digging or loosening of the soil so that the roots can do their own work of finding nutrients. We might add a bit of compost to the soil for nutrition. Once the plant or seeds are in the ground we mostly step back and let the growing happen, and perhaps do some watering and tending along the way. But we certainly don’t stand over the plant and help it grow. We help by creating the circumstances for growth, and then allow the growth itself to happen on its own. In this class, we will be following the principle of this analogy. We will consider the physical explorations as preparations for movement that will emerge naturally from the ground of our bodies. 

We will be working in three primary spacial levels, which represent multiple different ways of relating to the ground- ground movements, standing exercises, and walking forms. Likewise, we will be working in multiple dimensions from the most external and outwardly physical to the subtle and energetic landscapes that exist within us. The outer work will consist of investigations in some of humankind’s most intrinsic movements and positions such as sitting, rolling, squatting, crawling and hanging. Through these movements we will cultivate strength, functional mobility and ease. We will look at how to play with these movements in every day life and how to incorporate them into various contexts outside of class time. The more internal work will draw primarily from Qi Gong and will address developing good communication between joints and greater connectivity through the soft tissue matrix. Threaded throughout the course will be work with the breath and listening with the body, considered as a vital pieces of the ground we tend. All levels welcome. For more about my collection of physical practices and perspectives that I call Elemental Vessel, please go HERE.

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