A year ago at The Floating Lotus, owner Cassandra Benning decided that the Yoga studio would have a monthly theme and a focus pose. The reason was simple: This would allow each student to experience a noticeable difference in their bodies and minds.
Each class would be a mini workshop in learning the foundations of each pose of the month. Students still move and flow, but every movement is designed to open key areas of the body in preparation for the focus pose.
Foundations are important to the asanas (poses). “Really, foundations are key to life,” says Cassandra. “Without a strong foundation or strong sense of self, you stumble around with no balance or you feel lost. The theme each month anchors you in a mindset.”
For example, as students worked on March’s pose of the month, urdhva dhanurasana (wheel pose) they also practiced the March theme, abundance. Both represent opening the heart, physically and mentally.
“As I looked at how I was teaching, I noticed that having a focus each month made space for me to play and have fun,” explains Cassandra. “After 20 years of teaching, I needed to bring new flow and new life into what I share. I strive to share my own experience with others, and I always want this to be authentic, fun and down to earth.”
From this point of inspiration, Cassandra has seen a shift in the students as well. They even look forward to her riddles at the end of each month, to try to guess the next month’s pose.
Each month, Cassandra chooses a pose and sequence of movements that continually build on one another. In January, students practiced ardha chandrasana chapasana (half-moon pose). This led to February’s Tiger’s Pose, which progressed to urdhva dhanurasana in March. A common thread runs through each pose: They all require open quadriceps and shoulders, and stronger abdominals to support the lower back.
The best part of doing each pose of the month? “The expressions from students each month,” says Cassandra. “They see the transformation within themselves, from where they start to where they grow. Isn’t that what we are all here to do, to grow?”
Interested in joining a class and practicing our pose of the month? We’d love to see you! Check out our in-studio and online classes, and sign up today.