Modified Puja for those who can’t kneel

This topic contains 8 replies, has 0 voices, and was last updated by  Anonymous 2 years, 6 months ago.

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  • #75003

    Anonymous

    Hi people, I have a student who has health issues (arthritis) and can't kneel in the middle section of Puja. I know kneeling and touching the floor is essential, but is there a way we can get around this?Thanks. Yuska

    #98233

    Anonymous

    I think it's more about the gestures and intent.  I have 2 students who cannot kneel comfortably.  They stand and make the gestures and it's just as lovely. 

    #98234

    Anonymous

    I think it's more about the gestures and intent.  I have 2 students who cannot kneel comfortably.  They stand and make the gestures and it's just as lovely.

    I totally agree - making the gesture, palms towards the ground, with the intent, is much more important than the physical part of touching the ground! As it is all symbolic, allow them to find a symbolic movement that they can achieve in order to take part.

    #98235

    Anonymous

    I think so too, that's what we have done when one of us was very pregnant.

    #98236

    Anonymous

    Yuska, first off, congratulations on your new classes in SoCal! I'd love to know when and where you are teaching — is it in Eagle Rock? I might drop in some time, if you wouldn't mind that! As for Puja, I've had several ladies over the years who physically cannot kneel to the floor. So when I teach Puja, I always include the instruction to remain standing if you have any trouble kneeling. The ladies that stand just follow the hand/arm gestures, and that is every bit as lovely and grounding for them.Good luck!

    #98237

    Anonymous

    I have the same situation, and I instruct them to stand and make the movements with their hands, but focusing on the ground.  However, it's awkward to be the only one standing – one feels out of place and “wrong,” so sometimes I get a person who tries to do a half-crouch, trying to do something in between standing and kneeling, which is horrible for the low back, so I have to watch out for that.  I find I'm getting much clearer in my instruction to avoid that and give them a sense of permission to be the only one standing:"Come to the ground onto one knee. If you cannot kneel, remain standing upright and make these gestures with your hands."  And I continue to talk each step of the movement. 

    #98238

    Anonymous

    Thank you so much for your feedback, everyone! Now I feel a lot more comfortable telling them that it's okay to not kneel if they can't. Nancy: thank you for your kind words, and yes, feel free to drop in whenever you can!

    #98239

    Anonymous

    Same as above. I tell them they don't have to kneel.I even couldn't at one point post knee surgery. It felt funny to tell them to kneel as I remained standing. 😉

    #98240

    Anonymous

    Agreed with what everyone else on this thread has said – including Leigh Anne's comment about witnessing the weird half-crouch.  I like to use specific language around the kneeling/not kneeling situation (and similar situations where I feel it necessary to acknowledge common differences in bodies), and it goes a little bit like this: "If your body permits you today, I invite you to come onto one knee.  Or you can choose to remain standing... while we touch our ears to acknowledge the music we dance to, gesture towards the floor to acknowledge the surface we dance on..."  (etc.)It seems a little awkward if you're not used to phrasing it that way, but I've been in workshops before where the teacher used language like "I invite you..." and "if your body permits you..." and found it really warm and welcoming and accepting.

    #98241

    Anonymous

    The Importance of this gesture is acknowledge the surface you dance on. So make sure look at the floor and try to reach fingertips to the floor, then able to feel the energy from the floor!

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