Yoga Is So Much More Than Stretching

Editor’s Note: Welcome fellow lawyer, and yoga teacher, Aman Costigan, to the pages of Brilliant Legal Mind. As someone who loves yoga, she’s the perfect person to start off our month-long discussion of the practice.

Yes, yoga helps with our flexibility and stretches out our body. But, it’s so much more to yoga than just that.

Did you know that yoga can help us run energy (prana) in the body? And, that we can use props and other yoga equipment to ease pain in our body? 

If you didn’t, don’t worry. You’re not alone. I didn’t learn any of this until about 8 years ago and yoga has been life-altering for me. So now, I’m sharing all that I’ve learned with as many lawyers as I can. 

Prana (aka chi in Chinese medicine) flows naturally in our bodies and with yoga, we can move that energy to experience calm, clarity, rejuvenation and healing. 

Keep reading to learn about prana, why you care about it, how you can benefit from it and other practical tools and practices you can start right away to reduce stress. 

Legs up the wall 

After teaching 15+ yoga classes to lawyers, I was surprised to learn that the favorite yoga pose for lawyers is: legs up the wall. 

I thought for sure it was going to be a more involved shoulder stretch or pose with props. But, lawyers love simple — probably because the law is complex enough! It could also be from all the sitting and standing we do that has our spine craving connection with the floor. Our bodies also love the blood circulation from having our legs up the wall. 

Here’s how you can do it: 

1. Find a wall and yoga mat, if you have one

2. Sit sideways to the wall (i.e. one hip up against the wall)

3. Turn in a circle and then wiggle yourself into the wall. My pelvis is not lifted up off the floor

5. I lengthen my spine/back on the floor so my vertebrae have space between them 

6. I breathe into my back and into my mat

Do it for however much time you have. If you don’t know what to do between Zoom calls, why not do some legs up the wall?! 

Bee breathing to Calm the Habitual Thinking Mind 

Ever feel like your brain never shuts off? Or, it’s constantly thinking and worrying?!

This is something I hear from lawyers that I teach often. But, I’ve got something for you that can help and you might fall in love with it like other lawyers have.

In this video, I show you exactly how to do the bee breath and share the benefits of it. Calming the habitual thinking mind is just one benefit!

Toe Separators

Some of us wear high heels, run or walk and taking care of our feet is so important but often not done. We put a lot of pressure on our feet and toes, and sometimes it’s nice to show them some TLC for all they do for us.

Toe separators are easy to use. When you first use them, they can feel a little “ouchy”, but after a few minutes, they can start to feel so good for the toes.

Toe separators: 

– Create better alignment in the toes

– Create space between the toes and joints

– Help spread apart toes and helps boost blood flow in the toes and area

I use the Joya Toes brand and they are on Amazon. You can view them by clicking here 

Tongue Scraper 

I bought mine at a yoga retreat I went to last year. I’ve been using it since then, and I just love it! It helps me start and finish my day feeling fresh and clean. 

The benefits of a tongue scraper may surprise you. Here are the benefits of tongue scraping:

– Balances mind & body

– Improves digestion

– Strengthens the immune system

– Eliminates bad breath

– Kills unwanted bacteria

– Stimulates internal organs

– Sharpens sense of taste

I have a copper tongue scraper. I’ve heard they are generally the best.

What is toning?

Toning is sound that moves energy in the body quickly. Yoga is another way to move energy in the body, but it’s just not as fast. Other ways of moving energy include getting outside in nature, gardening and music. 

With our stressful careers, toning and moving energy in the body remove stress, emotional blockages and particles stuck on the energy bodies (in yoga they are called the nadis and in Chinese medicine, they are the meridians).

When energy moves, it begins to release anything that’s caught in the nadis. Once it begins to release, we can experience peacefulness. It also allows us to open up to what’s coming through us and to hear things like our deepest desires, our intuition, our gut feelings, etc. 

Through practices like this is how we find our authentic true selves – over time and with practice.

Toning is not for everyone, but I highly encourage you to try it at least once. If it works for you, incorporate it into your week. 

How to Practice Toning:

It’s super easy. Here are the 3 steps: 

1. Find a comfortable spot that you can be at for 4 minutes, uninterrupted. To do this, you can sit, lie down or put your legs up the wall.

2. Click this YouTube video link and press play. 

3. Close your eyes and just listen to the toning sound. When your mind wanders, just let it, and gently return to the sound of her voice. 

Author Bio: Aman Costigan is multi-passionate and is working on building her own empire of freedom. In addition to being a lawyer and Partner at Shores Jardine LLP in Canada, she felt called to share a yoga practice she was drawn to 8 years ago with other lawyers, so she started Beyond Yoga for Lawyers. Aman believes her yoga practice has been life-altering. It has given her coping mechanisms that allow her to be less anxious and less reactive in daily life and to live a more intentional and authentic life. Aman’s next offering of Group Yoga Classes for Lawyers starts September 15 and ends November 3, 2021.⁠  The deadline to register is Friday, September 10, 2021 so don’t wait — sign up while you still can by clicking here.

Connect with Aman Costigan at:

Instagram: @beyondyoga_for_lawyers 

LinkedIn: Aman CostiganPrivate Facebook Group for Beyond Yoga for Lawyers

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s