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SriDaiva/Bowspring

Kevin Hope
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11/07/2016 - 7:38pm
SriDaiva/Bowspring

Hello,

I'm curious if you've heard of the Sridaiva or Bowspring style of yoga that was created recently. I came across a description online, and it mentioned your work in passing, as the founders feel that they share some ideas in regards to a tipped pelvis.

To my untrained eye, it looks like bowspring practitioners have a much more pronounced pelvic tilt and lumbar curve than what you teach. I was hoping you could offer your opinion.

Thanks!

Kevin

Zephir
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11/27/2016 - 4:01pm

Hi there Esther...a huge fan here from Canada & many thanks to you, Kevin, for posing this question! It's been a burning question in my mind for about 2 years. I saw it online and had the exact same concerns as you. It appears to put a very exaggerated curvature in the lower back. As I am trying to relieve a lot of leg/hip and upper back stiffness, I certainly do not want to put too much force on this area. I realize that having curvature is important, but this does look like 'too much' and a great deal of teaching seems to be involved...and even with the pictures, it does not appear to be user friendly yoga. Here is the link to their site for teachers at Gokale Method and for any of us out there 'wondering' if we should be practicing putting curvature back into the lower back, using the Bowspring technique.

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Hi Kevin, 

Thank you so much for the post!  Firstly, I will absolutely say that I have not practiced Sridaiva nor Bowspring yoga.  Years ago, I dabbled with Anusara yoga, also founded by John Friend. 

The research I was able to do, I think you are right.  I like that the style(s) encourage strong glutes and a forward tipped pelvis. I do, however, feel that the upper lumbar is too curved and the back becomes overly arched/swayed from the photos I've seen of this type of yoga.  We prefer to keep the "J" spine intact, where the curve is concentrated down at the L5-S1 juncture, and then the rest of the lumbar remains quite straight and elongated.  

I like to send my students to look for pictures of BKS Iyengar in his backbends.  You will notice that the curve is almost solely present at L5S1.

I hope this is helpful to you!

Best, 

Charlene Hannibal

Kevin Hope
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Hi Charlene,
Thank you for the response. It's nice to know that my instincts were pointing the right way. I read the blog post in the November newsletter where Esther talked about back bends and posted pictures of BKS Iyengar. Really good stuff, and it has me being pretty mindful of where I'm bending from in my practice.

With that said, I was hoping you could offer another opinion. In the yoga I practice, we do work on back bends(and as I've said, I've been trying to be mindful of bending safely). I also practice Tai Chi and related arts, and we sometimes work on spinal "waves", and hold spinal flexibility and mobility to be very important.

Considering Esther's stance on non-sacral joint bending, do you think that this type of training is safe and useful? I should point out that the Tai Chi training does not include long held deep bends, just an attempt to be mobile at every vertabrae.

Thanks again!

Best,
Kevin

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