The Truelign system is at the heart of Yogaline’s project of creating the next generation of personalised yoga equipment. It is a system for calculating the optimum position of the hands and feet in the most common yoga postures of downward facing dog, upward facing dog and plank position - based on each person’s unique physiology. We use this system to custom-make each and every Yogaline mat with bespoke alignment lines printed in the correct position for your body.
The idea of creating personalised alignment guides was formed in 2017 when I was completing my first yoga teacher training programme in Bali, Indonesia. As with all yoga teacher trainings, anatomy forms a large part of the curriculum, particularly the anatomical principles relating to movement and postures within yoga. With the help of Pablo, our highly talented anatomy expert, the students had to adjust each other until we all found our optimum hand and feet placements that would allow us to flow between downward facing dog, plank, and upward facing dog pose. We then marked out these positions on our yoga mats using masking tape. Most of the students found their personal alignment guides extremely helpful and kept using them throughout the training. I thought to myself: “Why can’t we make personalised yoga mats so that everyone can have their own alignment guide?”
And so a few months later,Truelign was born. Truelign takes a simple set of measurements from each yogi and by using a little bit of math and geometry, it calculates the optimum position for the hands and feet on the yoga mat based on your body measurements. We use Truelign to create your custom yoga mat with tailor-made alignment lines engraved onto the surface.
How does it work?
Unfortunately, not all of us have a Pablo on hand to adjust our postures unto perfect alignment. However, the principles of yoga alignment that guide the correct placement of the hands and feet on the yoga mat are based on a simple set of rules that are designed to prevent injury and maximise the benefits of the yoga postures. The simplest way to find our correct alignment is to begin in Plank pose and then align our body in the following ways:
- Firstly, the body and torso should be flat, with the abdominals engaged. This is to build strength in the core and also to maintain a steady alignment of hands and feet as we flow into our postures.
- Secondly, the shoulders should rest back and down the spine. All too often we see yoga practitioners who hunch their shoulders in the postures, which lengthens their hand to foot distance. This can feel a little more comfortable when you are first getting started, however it creates excessive strain on the lower back, especially in upward facing dog pose, which over time can lead to injury.
- Thirdly, the top of the shoulder should be hovering just above the back of the wrist as the hand presses into the mat. If the hands are too far backwards then this places a lot of extra pressure on the wrists and the muscles of the shoulders.
- Finally, the feet should be flexed with the heels pressing backwards, which helps to keep the core muscles engaged and lengthens the muscles of the back of the legs.
Because these rules of alignment are the same for each person, we can calculate exactly where everything needs to be simply by taking a few key body measurements and inputting them into the system.
What are the Benefits?
Correct alignment in yoga is so important because it reduces the chances of getting an injury and it helps you to get the maximum benefits from the practice. Most yoga injuries are cumulative, so practicing yoga with optimal alignment for your body will make you feel confident and grounded in your yoga practice and allow you to enjoy the wealth of benefits that yoga brings to your body and mind.
We have spent a lot of time researching and testing our system on hundreds of yogis to ensure that we have got everything just right. We are delighted with the product that we have created and look forward to sharing the journey with you!