Heart Openers with Elastic Bands – a Tidbit Post, # 2

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heart openers with elastic bands – a tidbit post

# 2





tidbits are, by definition, tiny bits


google search indicates further elaboration –

qualities such as “pleasing” and “choice” are mentioned –

“small” and “bite-sized” also come up…


thus, this series of tidbits, of small bite-sized posts, are both my choice, and, hopefully, pleasing 😉

if this tidbit comes from, or leads to, a much longer, more complex post, a link will be provided –

thank you much


Elastic Bands and Yoga

Wait, What’s Elastic Bands Got to do with Yoga?

good question actually 😉



it’s about connections

in this case, as in my article on gratitude and visualization during a hand-heart opening movement, using an elastic band expands our awareness of this gesture

whereas the article, “opening a view of gratitude” exercises connecting the hand-arm opening movement to feelings and images of things we enjoy and are glad for, the use of an elastic band aims for a kinetic connection for deeper awareness of the pull and stretch of our muscles during the movement


the idea is to provide a stronger and also “visible” resistance, the elastic band, that both mimics our muscular movement when we open our arms to our heart, and provides a colorful outward visual of what’s happening inside our body

though i’ve gotten a few of eric franklin’s books, because of our recent move preps and move, i’ve only gotten a chance to glance through them, yet feel his work is a very developed system of what i’m only sensing right now

further reading and research into his work seems promising and interesting


please note, if you are unsure if you should use an elastic band, please consult a medical professional


Elastic Band Heart Opener Demo - Closed Starting Position
Elastic Band Heart Opener Demo - Closed Starting Position

sheila took these shots a day or two before our final move

unseen, i hope 😉 are piles of boxes!

it should be obvious how tired we were, but pacing and attentiveness to reaching jittery limits, is part of why yoga’s awareness enhancing is important

my purpose in this picture is to show initiating intent for what i want to do: in this case, do some much need physical heart openers to stretch my pecs, while simultaneously visualizing our upcoming move as the positive for opportunities we have planned for


Elastic Band Heart Opener Demo - Extended Arms Preparatory Position
Elastic Band Heart Opener Demo - Extended Arms Preparatory Position

maintaining a soft but purposeful stance, through out my mind and body, i extend my arms firmly, yet not in a clenched way

i want to experience a relaxed strength and resolve, not a forcing or fearfulness

placing my arms before me, is like turning on the switch


Elastic Band Heart Opener Demo - Arms Open to Set ROM-Band Position
Elastic Band Heart Opener Demo - Arms Open to Set ROM-Band Position

this is an important step for me

i’ve extended my arms maintaining as much of my initial relaxed resolve as possible, while extending my arms against resistance

the elastic band’s, and my own natural range of motion set point, where the level of exertion reaches a natural stop, is important for me to recognize, and accept

recognition of this natural set point within myself, is easier to feel when joined to that of the elastic band; i’m allowing it to help inform myself of all this

at this point, if i were to feel undue pain, pinching, or sudden disruptive change of breathing, i should stop

if i feel some pain or pinching, and one or more deep full breaths allow me to dissolve that pain, without intentionally deluding myself, or if i feel fine, i then feel free to go to my final step in the actual stretch (beyond that, i can remain outstretched, and breathing into that stretch, if that’s an edge i’d like to play)


Elastic Band Heart Opener Demo - Arms Extended Heart Open Position
Elastic Band Heart Opener Demo - Arms Extended Heart Open Position

without intending to, i think my rusty smile shows the stretch has done my mind, my heart, my body, some much needed good 😉

much thanks to sheila for retaking the picture enough times to get my hands placed where i’d envisioned them, and for not letting me have to look like an old propellor plane banking hard into a ridge of clouds 😉


Kinetic Awareness of Self


the end result for me, and for many in my classes that tried this, was to become more aware of the pectoral stretch and opening when the arms are extended and abducted

the elastic band resistance intensified the set point of awareness each of us experienced

more conscious breath was required

attention had to be paid to how much resistance to create via hand distance placement and still be able to fully open one’s arms without undue stress


Awareness Retained and Applied Without a Band

when the heart opener-chest expansions were repeated, without elastic bands, in a new set moments later, the body memory was a blessing of the continuity of awareness


Heart Opener Without Bands - Arms Extended Heart Open Position
Heart Opener Without Bands - Arms Extended Heart Open Position

btw, i cheated, and had sheila take this image now almost two weeks into our vermont move; our kitty cat pillows are out, but some canvases are still waiting for more bulldog hangers 😉

so the dramatic change decor and background isn’t an instant magical transformation due to successfully switching from bands to no-bands…or was it? 😉

ok, so maybe the magic just took a couple thousand miles and a sense of a new place taking shape 😉

i did mention this is a process? yes, quite a process!


the implications are numerous

asana learning can be given a deep sudden jump in awareness

folk with little or no memory of that type physical motion, can create an awareness

an awareness of one’s set extension, what our natural stretch point is, vs extension with external resistance, is more easily formed

a clearer sense of the distinctions, for one’s self, of what would constitute a strength vs an aerobic vs a stretch movement, is helped created

variety and options are introduced

and there’s more, but essentially, a continuity of awareness across a wider range of movement, of the same basic movement, seems to be created

it’s something i personally enjoy 😉



combine with visualization

again eric franklin has tweeted ideas, such as:

FranklinMethod Eric Franklin
Imagery has been proven in conjunction with physical practice, to be the fastest avenue to affect change on a cortical level.

as an artist, who’s felt the strength of connections between what i was painting, both the visualized idea and concrete painted canvas, and how i felt, i say: seems to make sense 😉

namaste – con dios – god be with you


tidbit series



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