Sep 182013

Students often ask me why we hold most postures for five breaths in the Ashtanga practice. While I have not asked Guruji or Sharath that question my understanding based on experience in my practice is that it is because the Ashtanga Vinyasa method is a moving-breathing system. The holds are long enough to initiate the benefits of the pose but short enough to keep one moving, which continues to build the heat and purifying sweat for detoxification.

I personally feel this is also the perfect equation for the monkey mind as five breaths is often the longest one can focus in each posture before fidgeting sets in.

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