Sunday, January 17, 2010

Astanga

Ahhh! I have a day off today, no classes, no private sessions. My schedule is a bit wacky right now. I teach a class every day, seven days a week. Sometimes, it’s just one class, but it’s funny how just one class shapes the day.

On the bright side, knowing that I have somewhere to go forces me to organise my time and it keeps my spirits up. But an occasional ‘day of nothing’ is really wonderful. I’ve been spending the day on my window seat, gazing out at the gray, drinking tea and reading.

I took my time with my practice this morning, practised full Primary with Beryl’s DVD. Now that I’ve passed the half-way point in WoYoPracMo, it’s feeling easier, I’m feeling stronger.

This morning marked the return of my bind in Supta Kurmasana. As soon as I started to come into the pose, I knew that I would be able to bind - it just felt right. It’s funny because yesterday, I was miles away from a bind.

I didn’t do any preparation for my backbends today: no cobra, sphinx or laying over a bolster. And all three of my backbends were perfectly wretched. Good to know that my preparation work was useful; I’ll return to it tomorrow.

Lately, the keywords in my access stats have been full of queries about the practice, ‘astanga this’ and ‘astanga that’. There’s definitely a theme. I wonder if some people are googling ‘astanga’, trying to find more information to fuel a New Year resolution. If that’s you, say hello in the comments!

Here’s this week’s edition of The Internet Asks:

how long to perfect primary series ashtanga
This is an interesting question. I mean, how do you know when your Primary Series is ‘perfect’? What does this mean? Is it when you know all the poses? Or when the transitions between them are flawless? Or maybe when you can do everything easily and still maintain an awareness of Bandhas, Ujjayi breath and Drishte? I don’t think I”ll ever really ‘perfect’ my Primary Series. I don’t know if I want to.

anusara for ashtangis
For some reason, this gave me gave me the giggles. I know that Anusara is, in part, derived from Ashtanga but these two systems are very different in their approach. I’m trying to imagine a hard-core, traditional Ashtanga teacher sweetly imploring her class: “Keep your heart open! Connect with the Shri!” *snort*

astanga on laptop
Not recommended. You’ll bust the keyboard before you even get to the standing poses and your feet will slip on the plastic. I recommend a Manduka Mat.

3 comments:

Boodiba said...

There's really nothing in primary to prep the body for back bending. Only completely natural back benders enjoy hopping right into urdvha d after...

That's my opinion anyway. Back bending isn't even that great after full 2nd compared do doing it after 3rd. This is from the "only via sheer force of will" back bender me! :)

The Misanthropic Yogini said...

Love those days of nothing.

Kaivalya said...

@Boodiba
Oh, I *wish* I was a natural backbender.