Interoception: The Future of Asana

How would our lives change if we placed our focus on our inner body as we moved through our practice? How would the yoga world and yoga classes look if we valued the tone of the inner body over the external form of the pose?

I remember being young and hearing “myths” of ancient yogis/Buddhist monks who can tell you about what their kidney or colon.. I thought: “Oh wow, so supernatural, so magical, but yah right” Then I lost that image for years, lost it as a value to work towards, placing it in the camp of levitating. But now I realize that this is, not only real and possible for all of us, this is the ultimate goal of our practice.

Yoga research is proliferating that has profound implications for how we approach our bodies, our practice and our lives. Turns out the real benefits of yoga don’t come from nailing an arm balance, practicing for 3 hours, having perfect alignment or perfect posture. In fact, the benefits of yoga come from slowing down the pace of our practice and guiding our awareness inward to the inner body (interoception) versus outward to the external form of the pose (proprioception).

Where the juice is at: our relationship with sensations of inner body (feeling our muscles as they stretch, feeling our organ as they move in poses, feeling our lungs as they fill with breath.

How would our lives change if we placed our focus on our inner body as we moved through our practice? How would the yoga world and yoga classes look if we valued the tone of the inner body over the external form of the pose?

Research suggests the results could be extraordinary, considering depression, anxiety, eating disorder and gut problems are beginning to be classified problems resulting from a lack of introception.

As yogis, our bodies are our primary tools for awakening. The more we become present to the sensations of the body, invoking a space of openness to what is, we open our eyes to the possibility that transformation may occur at any moment, that transformation is, in fact, occurring at every moment- with every breath. The body is our greatest teacher.

There’s nowhere to go but in. Get curious and go there- it’s where the yoga’s at.

Hear about the latest research on Interoception:

Listen to Bo Forbes on Yoga, Mindfulness, Neuroscience and Interoception on Liberated Body

Listen to Steve Haines, renowned Cranio-Sacral Therapist, on the Relationship Between Interoception and Chronic Pain

Interoception, yoga, mindfulness