Review: Success and Failure: Yoga for Freediving Course

Success & Failure - Yoga for Freediving

“Failure doesn’t mean you are a failure…it just means you haven’t succeeded yet.” Robert Schuller

With this review of Success and Failure, DeeperBlue.com returns to the world of Yoga for Freediving, the comprehensive course of study and practice created and designed by Sara Campbell, 4-time Freediving World Record holder. Success and Failure is the fifth installment in this six-part “Master Class” video series. In this exciting new chapter, students are guided in putting in practice all the foundation skills they have learned in a powerful practice.

“Success and failure are polar extremes on the human-created continuum of achievement. However, as with all human-created concepts, they are just that, concepts, or illusions. The Universe does not set out for some of us to succeed, and others to fail; it sets out for all of us to learn.” Sara Campbell

In our reviews of the first four series from the Yoga for Freediving course, Deep Relaxation, Manage Your Mind, Energy Beyond Breath and Training and Performance, we examined how the series built a foundation for the student’s meditative practices and journey of discovery. We have looked at the core skills and philosophies taught in the course and listened as Sara guides the student through the implementation of the new skills. Through the coursework, the reviewer has followed along with the students as they learn about Kundalini Yoga techniques to maximize their self-awareness, control of breath and finding the right mindset to maximize performance and focus.

Success and Failure “…tackles the universal issue of how we perceive success and failure. It is a fascinating part of freediving (and life) because we all have an inbuilt preconceived idea about what constitutes ‘success’ and what is a ‘failure’. However, when we dig deeper into these concepts we see that they are completely arbitrary and there is no such thing as success or failure!” 

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“Kundalini teaches us, through postures (asanas or kriyas), breath-work (pranayama), chanting (mantras), meditation and relaxation, to embrace our wholeness, the fullness of who we each are, and to recognize that at our core, we have pure, peaceful and joyful potential waiting to be explored.” Sara Campbell

For those readers just coming to this series, Sara Campbell is the founder of Discover Your Depths, “a unique teaching and personal growth philosophy based on yoga, meditation, freediving and mind-body awareness.” She designed the Yoga for Freediving program, which contains six yoga-based freediving courses, each bringing the viewer well over two hours worth of advice, exercises, techniques, and meditations to help you tackle what Sara considers to be the six crucial aspects of freediving as a spiritual journey:

With each of the six courses, Sara is including her 22 free Yoga for Freediving ‘How To‘ and ‘About‘ videos. These modules cover the essential techniques and terminology used throughout the program. Each video is a stand-alone training tool and the yoga sections are crucial for helping you create a regular meditation practice. These videos are also being released on Sara’s YouTube Channel – please subscribe to receive the videos and other exciting updates.

The courses can be taken separately, but each course in the series builds on the previous one, providing a comprehensive and detailed training regimen. Success and Failure continue to grow one’s Yogic practice from the foundation principles we learned in the earlier courses. The six videos in this course are:

  • Lecture: Success & Failure
  • Meditation: Conquer Self-Animosity
  • Pranayama: Sodarshan Chakra Kriya
  • Lecture: Sat Kriya and Perfectionism
  • Kriya: Sat Kriya
  • Visualization: I Trust
Sara Campbell. Photo Credit Jacque de Vos

Readers who have been following this series know that one wouldn’t engage in any sport without preparation and warm-up. Sara recommends that each student first watches all six videos to familiarize themselves and become comfortable with the material. If you haven’t already, the student is asked to download the 40-Day Meditation Practice document (the link is at the end of the video playlist) to prepare themselves. This helps guide the student in the start of a daily practice (if you don’t already have one started) and gives easy instructions on how to prepare yourself mentally for the course and for the rest of your day!

At this point in your journey, you will have set up a meditation corner in your home, decorated your altar, bought a yoga mat or meditation cushion, and are keeping a journal to accompany you on this journey. If you are just now discovering Yoga for Freediving, then Sara recommends you watch the “How To” and “About” videos to gain a better understanding of how these amazing yogic techniques work and can help you throughout this course.

Success and Failure

The first video in this course, Success and Failure, explains how when we define success for ourselves, we also set limitations on our expectations of the outcome.

“Success and Failure are polarities….one we perceive as very good and one we perceive as being very bad.” Sara Campbell

Throughout this 10:54 Lecture, Sara makes use of metaphor to illustrate how we perceive everything in our world and define these things by creating definitions that “polarize our experiences…the different aspects of our lives.” By changing our perceptions about whether something is “good or bad”, or a “Success or Failure”, we can extend our mental limitations. Everyone, not just competitive freedivers, projects these values of “success” or “failure” on the result of our activities. If we goal ourselves to be a 50-meter diver, when we fail to reach 50 meters, instead of absorbing the lessons of the dive, we do not learn from the experience because all we saw was that we failed to meet the “benchmark” of 50 meters. By moving our perspective, we can free ourselves from arbitrary benchmarks that limit our experience.

Sara Campbell world Champion freediver running freediving courses in
Dahab. Egypt. Photo Credit Dan Burton

Conquer Self-Animosity

This is a meditation to conquer “self-animosity” and not cripple our performances through polarized concepts and how they limit us through expectations and fears. This meditation supports the Sat Kriya and Perfectionism lecture as it gives a practice tool to counter the tendency to put immense pressure on ourselves to always be the best.

“Invariably being the best isn’t possible and so when we feel that we are falling short (failing), we beat ourselves up.” Sara Campbell

This 13:31 guided meditation transforms that self-animosity into a positive energy of acceptance and learning. The simple breathing pattern in this meditation drops the practitioner into a deep meditative state. The student also learns a new Mudra (hand position) to accompany this mantra. Throughout the program, Sara will guide the student in new techniques and terms. Beginning, as we do with all meditations with a simple Adi (first) Mantra “Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo”. In Kundalini yoga, this is the first mantra that should be used for any yogic practice.   It is used to tune in before Kundalini Yoga classes, bringing us into a relaxed state and opening ourselves up to becoming centered on the higher self.

Sodarshan Chakra Kriya

In Kundalini Yoga, a kriya refers to a series of postures, breath, and sounds that work toward a specific outcome. Practicing a kriya is key to starting a sequence of physical and mental changes that affect the student’s body, mind, and spirit. The Sodarshan Chakra Kriya is an exceptionally powerful pranayama exercise, complete in itself.

“Sodarshan Chakra Kriya is one of the most powerful practices in Kundalini Yoga and it is THE meditation that I attribute my incredible freediving career too.” Sara Campbell

It is a challenging and complex pranayama and is said to be a powerful way to cleanse your ‘subconscious” storage closet…imagine the subconscious as a storage closet. Through meditation, we can clean and put order to the contents of our “mental closet”.

This 21:16 lesson is a fairly complex pranayama, combining a breath-hold with a mantra, belly pumping, and an eye-focus. If you are just beginning your meditation or yoga practice, Sara recommends starting with one of the simpler practices such as Learn to Meditate or One-Minute Breath.  The mantra is “WaHe(y) Guru” which can be defined as “the one who brings you from darkness to light”.

Before sunrise, when the channels of energy are most clear, if this mantra is sung in sweet harmony, you will be one with the Lord. This will open your solar plexus, charging the solar center, connecting it with cosmic energy. You will be liberated from the cycles of karma that bind you to the earth. No tongue can tell how bright the light of cosmic energy is, but when you recite this mantra daily, you will have this light within you.” Yogi Bhajan.

Sara Campbell 96m World Record, Photo Credit Blue Eye FX

Sat Kriya and Perfectionism

“In this lecture, I talk about my own painful journey of attempting my first ever 40-day practice; the powerful lessons I learned, and the incredible, unforeseeable benefits I received from finally letting go of needing to be the best.” Sara Campbell

In this 11:26 video, Sara discusses her personal struggles as she started on the path to becoming a Yoga Instructor and the valuable lesson learned because of the struggle. Through the sharing of her story, Sara explains how we must work on “letting go of our ego” and stop working on being perfect or the best. By setting ourselves up to fall short of the goal of “perfect”, we can find ourselves in a similar pattern to the one Sara was in.

By recognizing that we are accountable to only ourselves in exercising the discipline to come to the mat each morning, we can free ourselves from the fear of external judgment and have to be “perfect” and just surrender to the change as we begin our own practices.

So, when Sara recommends setting you up for victory, she means setting goals that are attainable, and that don’t create their own failure loop. Instead of trying to meditate 20 minutes a day for 40 days and falling short, set an attainable and positive practice of 3 minutes a day that is sustainable. As always journal your experiences and insights so you can refer back to them.

Sat Kriya

Sat Kriya, along with Sodarshan Kriya (also in this course) is another one of the most powerful Kundalini practices. Sara says it was the “first most important lesson that I gained from my own early yoga practice into the powerfully destructive tendency that we all have one some level, of perfectionism.” By recognizing and releasing the pressure we put ourselves under to be ‘perfect’ can be most liberating.

People who have mental stress and tension benefit from this kriya since these disturbances
are felt to be connected with an imbalance in the energies of the lower three chakras.

Sara will guide the student through the Kriya and demonstrate the proper techniques, mantras and postures in this 24 minutes course.

Sara Campbell. Photo Credit Discover Your Depths

I Trust

“We can each learn that the value in life is in LEARNING, and growing at our own pace, to reach our own destiny – where other people are headed, and how quickly they are getting there, has absolutely no relevance to us or our lives or dives. Once you can start to shift to learning, rather than performing, you will find that the pressure is off, the joy increases, and the experience transforms into something even greater than you could ever have dreamed of.” Sara Campbell

This is a really great visualization, which ties in closely with the Ong Namo lecture in DEEP RELAXATION. The course guide suggests that you the diver use it 2-3 times a week and continue at least once a week and before every dive training session.

This guided visualization will help you build a deeper, more harmonious relationship with your body to create more fluid, easy, happy dives. Once you trust your body, the dives start to simply unfold. As well as being an amazing preparation for training and performance dives, it’s also an incredible way to optimize the neuro-muscular development of the dive response without even getting into the water.

More About This Course

  • Features:
    • six videos and over two hours of specific coursework that challenge your definition of Success and Failure and opens new doors in your Yogic practice.
    • a further two hours of tips and technique training in 22 HOW TO videos
    • video streaming on any mobile device
    • MP3 audio downloads of the lectures and visualizations to take with you wherever you want
    • step by step program guidelines to ensure you are focused on letting go of the old paradigms and adopting a new attitude towards Success and Failure.
    • PREMIUM clients will receive a personal online consultation and three one to one sessions with Sara.
  • PRICE: $50 USD
  • Available from www.yogaforfreediving.com