My return to yoga

Just a few weeks ago, I started taking yoga classes again at the Kundalini Yoga House in Boeungkengkang district. I have never done Kundalini yoga before and my previous yoga experience was awhile ago where I took Ashtanga yoga with my former officemate Tara. At that time, I wasn’t so diligent about it. 

After years of being inactive and leading an almost sedentary life working behind the desk most of the times I’ve developed a chronic back problem. For years, I endured the pain and when I couldn’t bear anymore that’s when I finally decided to see a physiotherapist. I had a total of 15 expensive sessions with this French physio but there wasn’t any slightest change at all. I felt I was shortchanged. 

My back never get back to 100% fitness. For the last 4 years or so I bore the excruciating pain without any intervention, well, except for a few massage sessions here and there and the back rubs from my husband. So when a friend of mine invited me to go with her to a yoga class, I had my doubts on its effectiveness in relieving my back pain. 

There is clearly a big difference between Ashtanga Yoga and Kundalini Yoga. The Ashtanga method involves synchronizing the breath with a series of intense postures. The Kundalini way, on the other hand, goes beyond the physical performance of poses because its emphasis is more on breathing, meditation, and chanting.  chanting. However, Kundalini poses can also be very intense, that I am finding out. Imagine pumping your stomach repeatedly while holding your breath, or performing a pose while breathing in a certain way. What I really, really love about Kundalini is that before the class ends, we lie down on our backs and listen to a song and let our mind wander (is this meditation? hahah). After this, Mindy, our teacher, plays a closing song which we listen to or, if we know the lyrics, sing along with. The singer’s voice resonates around the room and I feel the energy from it coming to me that I happily sit there listening till its over.

I may be new to Kundalini but, so far, I can really say that it is very relaxing to the mind (how many times have I drifted off to sleep during relaxation exercises?) and very invigorating to the body. After only six classes, I already noticed a slight decrease in the intensity of my back pain. I plan to continue Kundalini and I am really hoping the pain will go away. After each class, I feel a calming sense, a sense of well-being. I wish I can say more but I am just beginning to discover Kundalini yoga. 

I am grateful to Josiet for bringing me back into yoga. Okorn charan.

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