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Knoff Yoga - 5 Pillars of Practice

James Cairns Post

Knoff Yoga practice has a sound neurological basis where we learn to modulate the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) between two opposite poles:

• Sympathetic (Fight or Flight Response)

• Parasympathetic (Relaxation Response)

Think of the ANS as a continuum between these two poles, like the negative and positive ends of a battery.

Using a car as an analogy, the Sympathetic Response is the accelerator and the Parasympathetic is the brake.

Our busy lifestyles drive us towards the high revving Fight or Flight Response and floods our bodies with stress hormones: cortisol, adrenalin and norephedrine – we live in a constant state of threat or panic. Most of us run on adrenalin all the time and it is slowly killing us.

Long-term stress is corrosive and carcinogenic and leads to poor health and poor performance, like revving a car in the garage until the fumes overwhelm you.

When yoga is practiced correctly - with all of its component parts, in the right place and in the right amounts, it acts like a circuit breaker and turns on the Relaxation Response.

The moment you step on the mat and focus on alignment, breath and bandhas your heart starts to calm down and you turn on anti-stress enzymes and hormones, such as prolactin, vasopressin, oxytocin and serotonin.

As you apply the Knoff Yoga '5 Pillars of Practice', aligning your body and turning your mind inwards, you shift your brain wave patterns from Beta to Alpha. As you concentrate on technique and slow down your brain wave patterns further, you move deeper into the Relaxation Response – even while you are working strongly in your practice.

Yoga makes many promises, but it has to be done correctly. Incorrect practice can harm.

Everyone wants health and well-being. Everyone wants to be happy. The 5 Pillars of Practice are the tools required to keep your car in tune and running smoothly.

THE 5 PILLARS OF PRACTICE

1: ASANA – focusing on the physical structure using correct anatomical alignment.

2: BANDHA – muscular and energetic locks to transform internal energy creating heat.

3: DRISHTI – specific focal points for directing the eyes and composing the mind.

4: PRANAYAMA – controlled expansion of the life-force.

5: VINYASA – connecting techniques synchronizing movement with breath.


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