Intermediate Asana Sequence to Peak Pose, Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana (Revolved Half Moon)
Why do we call a twisting sequence a detox flow? There is no specific research that supports detoxing due to a twisting posture or sequence. Twists do create more range of motion, flexibility, and they have the added benefit of stimulating digestion. Detoxifying happens with ANY yoga sequence or practice. We cleanse the body through increased respiration, circulation, excretion, stimulating the movement of lymph, and stimulating the digestive organs.
I am all for bringing elimination as an awareness practice in yoga. I do not like to tell my students, "This is a detox flow." For me, I feel like that would focus attention on the physical practice. I also feel like that might cause some students to think that they need to get rid of something, instead of focusing on exactly where they are at and integrating that into practice.
You are perfect, whole and complete just the way you are. Just by showing up you are practicing yoga. Instead of focusing on twists as detoxifying, maybe allow your awareness to rest on finding center. Draw your awareness to your spine, and allow yourself to feel your body moving around the central axis point, or sushumna nadi. Invite your pranayama practice to focus on breathing up and down the length of the spine.
Ego is the identification of the seer with the instrument that is seeing. Let the practice of twisting represent taking a new view on life, or allowing yourself to see things from a new perspective.
(Either flow from side to side or invite longer holds, depends on the energy of the day. Rajas/Tamas. Twists can be stimulating, but they can also be calming with a little less effort and longer holds.)
Seated Spinal Twists
Navasana Prep with a Twist
Navasana Prep with Twist
Fold in Sukhasana (Roll over your shins coming onto hands and knees.)
Chakravakasana -> C-Curve
Adho Mukha Svanasana -> Bhujangasana -> Twisted Dog (both heels to left/right)
Parivrtta Utkatasana -> Parivrtta Ashwa Sanchalanasana -> Rise up into Parivrtta Anjaneasana with open arms before coming into Anjali Mudra at the heart and hooking elbow -> Parsvottanasana variation where back heel is lifted -> Anjaneasana -> Virabhadrasana 2 -> Viparita Virabhadrasana -> Utthita Trikonasana -> Parivrtta Prasarita Padottanasana (Walk it around to the front of your mat. Either vinyasa to second side or step forward to uttanasana)
*repeat sequence second side*
Parivrtta Hasta Padangusthasana -> Urdhva Prasarita Eka Padasana -> Aschwa Sanchalanasana -> Parivrtta Prasarita Padottanasana -> Virbhadrasana 1 -> Parsvottanasana -> Parivrtta Trikonasana -> Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana -> Balancing Apanasana
*repeat second side*
Closing sequence and meditation:
(I closed this sequence with postures that stretched the glute medius. You could also close this sequence with hip openers like badha konasana, upavistha konasana, and setu bandha sarvangasana for symmetry.)
Focus final meditation coming back to sushumna nadi. Having a strong sense of center gives you something to come back to, after moving through asana and meditation practice. All thought is based directly or indirectly on the self, and ego only becomes an issue when it runs the show. Instead of the need to cast off or eliminate the ego, allow the twisting practice to integrate your sense of self. The folding, unfolding, and elimination happens organically from the practice.
Guru Dev Namo,