The Confines of our mat

So last night... we experimented with rolling our mats up and practicing...an experiment that some may have hesitated and had one of those "screw you Heather" moments.  But its a different sensation to practice without a mat.  A sense of fear and instability sets in that one might fall, slip, lose alignment.  

Would taking the mat away become a sense of freedom? That yoga isn't just front to back that it can be one giant circle? That there are no limits. But you see it and we all do it - if we end up too far away from the top of our mats to step back, we step forward and re-adjust.

Or would taking the mat away lost a sense of confidence & comfort? That there are no more boundaries, no telling where you are or where to go next because there is no front, back nor edges to your practice. 

Is there something to be said about a mat and its confinement? Or is it a space signifying a place of security, "home", a place to be fully self-aware.  So when we roll off of our mat at the end of class and place our hand on the floor, we take a moment to recognize the physical different of the confines of our mat and we begin to take our practice into the world.