Friday, November 6, 2009


I had a wonderful practice today. In fact, I had a wonderful day.

I woke early, did my half-hour of meditation, then 90 minutes of Full Primary with the Power Yoga DVD. Everything flowed smoothly and easily. Sirsasana was particularly strong today, Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana was particularly challenging (I misplaced my balance this week, need to find it!) and everything else fell into place (except Garba Pindasana, which just fell apart, but I got a good laugh out of it).

As I was practising Baddha Konasana, my mind started wandering. I wondered why Beryl doesn't teach the second version of Baddha Konasana (with the back rounded, forehead to toes). I'm sure there's a good reason. Does someone know? Anyone? Bueller? Jen?

Speaking of Beryl, Christine commented recently and shared this amazing video of Beryl Bender Birch talking about her own philosophy of teaching (courtesty of the Omega Retreat Centre in New York). Wise words from a great teacher: 'You need to practice in order to teach.' I know I wouldn't be an effective teacher without my practice. Daily practice is fertile ground for all of my best ideas and innovations as a teacher. It keeps me fresh and inspired.

It' s my girlfriend's birthday tonight. I stopped by the store to pick up a Chocolate Truffle Cake after my noon class. This is a classic example of a 'selfish gift'. I love chocolate and sweet things, but she doesn't find as much joy in sweets as I do. She'll enjoy the cake anyway. And I knit her a fabulous blue toque that I know she'll love, so it's all good. :-)

I'm heading into the weekend with a pile of amazing books waiting to be read and lots of fun knitting ahead of me. I'm getting ready to turn the heel on that sock I'm working on. The sock is scaring me - I've put a lot of work into it. The Lululemon people say you should 'do one thing a day that scares you'. Glad to know I'm living up to my full potential!

The weather is supposed to be fabulous here, by the way. Sunday may be the perfect day to go to the Really Big Park and have a Autumn Picnic!


Flo said...

Happy birthday to your girlfriend!!
I only have Beryl's book; I've nver seen her dvds. How are they??

Jen Stevenson said...

Wish I had the answer but I don't. I do enjoy that pose though. It just feels so good to bring my head to my toes. I almost always practice it that way. Beryl made a comment once when I snuck it in. It never dawned on me to ask about it. I'll have to ask her when she comes next month.

Arturo said...

hi Kai
happy birthday to your SO.

when B is on a heavily teaching schedule, i imagine she must limit her own practice time a bit. it must be a challenge with teaching, finding a balance between having time for your own practice and time to help others with theirs.



Kaivalya said...

I'll pass on your birthday wishes to E. She's going to be mightily amused that my blog readers are sending her birthday wishes.

I wrote a bit about the DVD on today's post. I love the DVD. It's clear, moderate paced and has the feel of being in a 'real' class. Hands down, it's my favourite Astanga DVD.

Yes, please do ask! I'm curious! I have a feeling she may sidestep it due to spinal health issues (disc herniation and lower back spasms). Most western yoga practitioners don't have the hip flexibility to safely practice Baddha Konasana B.

For the same reason I almost never teach the 'chin-to-shin' part of Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana, unless the student has super-flexible hamstrings and a strong core.

I'm experiencing this same problem myself with a heavy teaching schedule mid-week. I need to conserve my energy on those days so I rarely practice for more than a half-hour. I can't imagine how Beryl does it - keep in mind, she's travelling to teach. That would be so difficult!