The Gunas in Acro Yoga
January 10, 2017
I find an incredible sense of freedom and wonder in acro yoga. Working closely in careful partnership builds a tremendous sense of trust and allows for a unique expression of creative movement. I am ever grateful to my acro teachers and partners I have worked with as it opened up a world of empowerment, community, and fun. The process of working past fear takes courage, so acro yoga is rajasic by nature – meaning it is dominated by action, passion, fire. But when working in a kind and a communicative way, the rajasic practice definitey moves toward sattva guna – the frequency of peace, harmony, balance. It’s a lovely way to cultivate rajas-sattva guna. And this is truly a beautiful thing.
I enjoyed teaching a weekly acro yoga class for nearly five years, but now just practice occasionally due to being realistic about having an aging body. Acro is different than traditional yoga asana in that one is not entirely in control of his or her own body’s movement. I suffered an injury to my shoulder while working on more advanced (extremely rajasic) acro skills that required surgery in order for me to continue carrying out the physical demands of caring for my son with special needs. The resulting surgery of course led to a long period of recovery, or tamo guna – inertia, heaviness. Rajo guna, the fire and passion, is what leads us; it can lead us to peace, but it can also lead us to pain. While caution should be exercised at all ages, an aging body is certainly more prone to injury and acro yoga should only be practiced with a someone who is sensitive to his or her partner’s physical needs or concerns. The practice reminds us to be cognizant of our daily habits – in what direction are our thoughts and actions leading us? Learn more about the gunas here.