Should Asana practice be different for Men and Women?
The way men approach asanas is very different from women.
With men the testosterones kick in and there is a lot of will, volition and physical exertion involved in asanas.
Women are a bit different in terms of the physical, mental and emotional nature. This has to be considered in the asana routines. A woman needs to get out of her daily routine and environment to get closer to her identity, individuality and connect to herself. This is because her involvement with her immediate family or work environment is microscopic. So the asana routine for a woman is not only about the body but also the mind. A calm, stable and fulfilled mind is critical for the health of not just the woman but the entire family. So the onus on the teacher is much more when taking a women’s class.
Butter kept out softens in the sun. Just like that, muscles soften with the interaction of breath. Freedom of pelvic girdle, pubic corners, shoulders and arms can be achieved this way.
Women of different ages deal with different issues related to menstruation, menopause, PCOD and other uterus related problems. This results in a wavery mind. So, the mind is strongly connected to a woman’s health. For a man it is easier to disconnect from home with just one foot out the door. But, women are involved with every microscopic thing and sometimes can’t see the big picture and ignore themselves. This takes a toll on their health and problems like PCOD, hormonal issues, menstrual issues creep up leading to a shaky and insecure mind.
There are many tiny aspects that need to be attended to in each asana for women. So the routine, instructions and approach towards asana for women has to be very different from men.
– By Rajeshree