Friday, July 24, 2009


When I rolled out of bed this morning, I felt *different*. A full night of sleep helped, but the shift was more profound than merely being well-rested. I felt like my psyche had somehow been 'reset'. Before I left the apartment, I went on a tidying blitz, cleaning up loose papers, putting the bed away, sweeping the floors, washing dishes. When I got home in the afternoon, I did a heavier cleaning blitz, scrubbing the kitchen and bathroom, washing the floors and dusting.

It feels good to have a clean space. I feel like my head has also cleared. I'm ready to have a good weekend and I have some great things planned for next week! :-)

Today, I practised the full Primary Series. It rained off and on all day, so I was indoors. It has recently become very humid here and I definitely felt it. I was *sweating*. A lot.

Unrolling the mat, I first felt a great resistance to my practice. Stepping into my first sun salutation, I felt dread. I kept going. I decided not to think beyond my next salutation. The flow did not feel good like it usually does. By the time I finished all of the salutations, I was warming up mentally as well as physically. Into the standing poses, I noticed that I was more engaged with the practice.

I practised using the Beryl DVD. It was the first time in over a week that I've used this DVD and I've missed it. It's different from Beach Beryl in subtle ways. First of all, I noticed the pace - the DVD moves along more quickly than Beach Beryl. The intensity is turned up a few notches. I noticed that it's a slightly more advanced practice (she offers more modifications in Beach Beryl; in the DVD, nothing is skipped). Today, I practised (and was able to bind!) in Marichyasana D and I tackled the Dreaded Setu Bandhasana.

About a month ago (June 22nd to be exact), I added 'push ups' to the vinyasa between seated poses in order to build strength. This is how it works: after Urdhva Muhka Svanasana (up dog), I move back into Chaturanga and push up to plank. I think Richard Freeman does this on his Primary DVD. It's difficult if you're still trying to master Chaturanga. I remember that Teacher M used to ask me to do this and I would collapse into a belly flop in frustration.

At first, it was difficult and I found myself tiring out long before the end of the practice but after a week, I started to see some results. I believe I really am stronger. I noticed this when demoing Vasisthasana for a student last week (in the past, my arm would shake in this pose). I noticed particularly in Uth Pluthi/Tolasana.

So I think I will carry on, unless I notice that the repetitive motion is negatively affecting my joints.


Michelle said...

Ah, the belly flop. I am excellent at that one.

Kaivalya said...

@Michelle: It gets easier! One day you'll just find yourself doing Chaturanga with ease. The first time it happened to me, I couldn't believe I was doing it, then I couldn't believe it had ever been that difficult!