GRAVITY. BREATH. FREEDOM OF THE SPINE.
Vanda Scaravelli was an Italian pianist who after experiencing the early death of her husband, found relief in yoga. She was fortunate enough to study with Iyengar and Desicashar in private tuition over several summers in Switzerland.
She soaked up what there was to learn from those ground breaking teachers. Yet, when her studies with them came to an end her own explorations began.
Scaravelli never wished to start a new school of yoga, her intention always was to share her explorations with dedicated students in private sessions, encouraging them to make their own observations in their bodies and then teach from their own experiences.
Two of her close students, Diane Long and Sophy Hoare, are now my most important inspiration, along with their students Bill Wood, Margaret Hardman and others and Scaravelli’s only book “Awakening the spine”.
I deeply appreciate Lisa Petersen in Dublin for sharing her wisdom and teaching with me and others. And of course, thanks goes to everybody who comes to my classes giving me the opportunity to share, learn and explore.
Grounding and unravelling, finding the wave of the spine
Scaravelli observed her body and nature patiently and curiously and developed an approach to asanas that explicitly explores how gravity and breath work together to release the spine and bring freedom and ease of movement to the body as a whole.
Gravity invites the body to ground and find roots. This happens naturally. Tension in the body results in holding the body up in an energy consuming way. Finding ways of releasing habitual tension, allows the body to accept gravity and frees up energy for smooth and graceful movement.
The art of Scaravelli yoga is to be patient and let the body breathe, release, breathe, release…
The release can come from constant movement of the body, gently moving towards the shape of a traditional asana, allowing the bodymind to feel restrictions and release them with attention to the breath.
These are the movements of nature, not straight lines, but round movements, circling towards a certain shape.
This yoga is all about un- doing, creating space in the body and calming and strengthening body and mind…. mindful movement, resting mind.