I like the article, Previously Untold Yoga History Sheds New Light, not only because it points out the difference between ancient and modern yoga, but it’s also a reminder to just be present in “your” yoga.
There is a facade around ancient yoga being practiced today and it’s contributing to injuries. We’re focusing in the wrong direction. Instead of concentrating on your connection to your body during yoga, we look too closely at the pose itself. First, many poses are unnatural and can force the spine and other joints out of their natural alignment. So why do those poses? That’s a great question we should ask ourselves. People often come to me feeling like they have failed because they can’t do certain poses. This is crazy thinking unless you want to star in Cirque Du Soleil. The question to ask is “Am I benefiting from this pose?” If you are, rest in it and feel its purpose. If not, just breathe and rest in another pose that helps you feel grounded.
It’s not easy to notice what is working and not working in your body as well as how to be present. So it’s easy and tempting to look at the teacher and others around us and try to be in their pose. As this article so wisely says “True yoga is found not in texts, but in the heart of the practitioner.”