If you have ever taken a yoga class, at some point you have probably heard the word Drishti. Hopefully you received a brief definition however, let’s dive into what this word truly means.
Drishti – Sanskrit; focused gaze, a means for developing concentrated intention
When you simply google the word that is what you will find. Taking it a step further, when my students seem to be struggling to find balance and therefore, presence within a pose, I encourage them to find their drishti. A drishti is preferably an inanimate object, not moving. This lack of movement aids in the student finding balance. With balance, comes the presence. As you gaze upon your drishti, you find stillness, no longer concerned with finding balance, you can now check in with your body in this moment.
Through the practicing of drishti you improve your asana practice. Find a stronger level of concentration and become more in tune with your body and its alignment. Many practice drishti for strong balancing postures such as, tree pose however, moving deeper, this can be done throughout your practice allowing awareness.
Once we take a seat back in our minds, the practice becomes meditative. We feel everything in that moment and can acknowledge it as it comes. We can check in with our bodies and adjust if something does not feel right.
The next time you are have trouble finding balance and presence during a practice, try finding a drishti. Even in say, downward facing dog, try gazing at the tip of your nose and see how it changes the posture. Are you able to relax, find balance, breathe easier. Let me know how you feel after.