My energy levels are back, but I felt stiff and gummy this morning. It’s the third day of my Lady’s Holiday, so I did the full Primary without the closing poses. I did practice Supta Konasana though, and held Downward Facing Dog in the sun salutations.
I usually take it easy for three days during my ‘holiday’ and then go back to my normal practice, so tomorrow business as usual.
I resumed the ‘lift-up-and-jump-back’ thing with blocks during my seated vinyasas. I was sweating buckets - it was great! I enjoying the feeling of working hard. My arms were tired when I finished. At the moment, I’m getting the ‘up’ part, but the ‘jump back’ is a work in progress. Baby steps!
I’ve been thinking a lot about drop-backs lately. My Urdhva Dhanurasana is looking pretty good. Theoretically, I *should* be able to drop back. But I can’t. I dream regularly about dropbacks (and the other night, I also dreamt that I could catch my heels in Kapotanasana - seriously, I’ve never given much thought to that pose, so where did THAT come from?). In the dreams, my drop backs are easy and fun. It's a bit of an obsession.
I recall being told that one ‘must be able to do drop-backs’ in order to move on to Intermediate. I suppose that’s why I’ve been fussing about this; because I’ve been thinking about Intermediate.
Patrick left a great comment yesterday about the criteria for adding Intermediate, citing Maehle’s ‘primary-every-day-even-low-energy-days’ standard. If that’s the case, I’m ready. My energy levels don’t get much lower than the first day of my Lady’s and I got through the entire series, sans inversions.
To Intermediate or not to Intermediate?
This is where it becomes challenging as a home practitioner. I have to self-evaluate, determine my own direction and assess my own progress. I don’t want to move on too quickly before I’ve truly mastered the Primary Series (I can do the poses; it's the transitions I'm thinking about), but I also don’t want to hang back in my comfort zone (which is my tendency).
Almost 3 years of Primary has done a lot for my physical strength, but very little for my spinal flexibility. I don't think my backbends are going to improve further without a lot of extracurricular preparation work or the first part of Intermediate.
2010 might be the year I start expanding my practice.