This is not Iceland. But in a way, it feels like it. An island, loosely populated, separated from the rest of the world, with a wild countryside that is powerful and a place that is known for peace and quiet.
This is not Iceland. This is Bowspring I am doing and writing about. In a way, I feel like being on an island. Compared to the world population or other fitness trends, there are not many Bowspringers on this planet. It's like a movement bubble that is separated from the rest of the world. The alignment is very natural and the movement powerful like an Icelandic volcano. And from what I hear and feel, we are at peace with ourselves and humanity. It feels like being on an island.
But I am no island. And we humans are no islands either. I have noticed radical individualism not only on the Bowspring and yoga islands but all across Europe and so-called ‘Western countries’. Does this serve humanity? Does this bring societies closer together? I say no, no, no.
I feel the need to move on. Move on to something more collective, collaborative and united. Even though I am only an observer from the outlines of this island, with a beginner's mind and a kind of native heart, I can feel this Bowspring island start crumbling. Certified teachers left and started over with a new name for basically the same movement. One after the other. It's noticeable even to outsiders. This doesn't look like a strong and growing community anymore. It feels like an empty cover. In many ways, it is a pity because the postural alignment and movement pattern is so helpful and healing. But it's not only about the body. The mind and the soul need food that is nutritious, too.
We humans are no islands. We humans are social beings. We live in cooperative societies for so long. Our nature is not built for radical individualism. I feel the need to move on even in my movement practice. Move away from this individualism of a yoga mat and move towards a team sport where you can only win if you play together with others. Move on to a community that can survive when one member is away for some time. Move on to a group of people that stand in solidarity with others, that reflects all kinds of repression and discrimination and that shares with one another. Move on to humans that don't believe in radical freedom at the cost of others, but are willing to sacrifice a little freedom for the well-being of humanity as a whole.
I love how my body feels during and after doing Bowspring. But my mind and soul are not satisfied as they miss being connected with others as a team. I feel the urge to move on. Like leaving the island of Iceland and moving to a landlocked country like Austria.
Let's see where my journey gets me to. Rowing, socker, volleyball? Dancing, rugby, basketball? The good thing is that the Bowspring alignment can be applied to all kinds of movement practices and sports. Any ideas? It's time to move on.
© Barbara Neubauer 2021-11-20