Sirsasana: Don’t Stop Believing

I’ve been practicing yoga for a while and my headstand practice has been less than awesome.  I know that I am strong enough that I should be able to rise into sirsasana with control and ease.  Once I am up, I can hold it up to 50 breaths, depending the day.  My problem is in that moment, just as you shift weight onto your forearms and head when your toes and knees are supposed to float up.  Mine don’t float.  I tense up, over-think the motion and usually just kick myself up.  This is not ideal.

What to do?

Practice.

After 3 weeks of yoga teacher training, I improved all my asanas, but the transition into headstand was still lacking.

What to do?

More practice.

I was starting to reach the point where I thought I might never float.  What if there was just something about my body, my practice that wouldn’t float?

And then, the other morning, it happened.  I was pretty much convinced that I’d never float.  My mind has given up and in giving up I think I stopped worrying about each piece of the asana.  I was too beaten up to stress about the moment when my feet are supposed to float and when I stopped thinking, they floated!

So what did I learn in all this?

If I really thought that I couldn’t reach sirsasana with control, I probably would have stopped trying.  I didn’t because something deeper than my mind pushed me to keep going.  When my mind finally gave up, it just stopped and my body was able to take over.  And I floated.