Wednesday, March 31, 2010


I woke up before the alarm this morning. I must be adjusting to the new, early schedule! It helps that I’ve been getting to bed on time.

Today’s practice didn’t feel particularly strong or fiery, but I think I may just be adjusting to the heat and the environment. I decided to focus on my attention on the breath and keeping things flowing. Teacher M is good about pointing out areas where I stop and ‘fuss’. Today, he asked me to come into Dandasana and take the next pose wherever I ‘landed’ even if I was not completely on the mat.

Up to this point, the adjustments have been easy and quick but today M stopped me in a pose and kept me there for a LONG time. I had already taken 5 breaths in Kurmasana when he walked over and held me there for another five breaths for an adjustment. Then he rearranged my feet (bringing my legs out wider) and I stayed for another 5 breaths. With the adjustment, I was able to get my chest and chin to the floor and activate my legs. My heels didn’t *quite* lift up, but they were thinking about it!

In Urdhva Dhanurasana, I need to be mindful not to turn my right foot out. I currently carry too much weight in my arms; I need to root down through the heels, bring weight into the feet. At home, I’ve been playing around with hang-backs and coming up, carefully observing the muscular action required to come up from a backbend. I need this awareness to stand up on my own.

Wouldn’t it be marvellous if I could drop back and stand up on my own by the end of April?

A Debrief: March, The Month of Tapas

Good-bye, March. You started strong, but turned into a marathon of a month. When I dubbed you ‘The Month of Tapas’, I had NO idea. You really kicked my ass. Um, thanks!

At the beginning of the month, I set some goals:

- Keep a six-day Astanga practice, including my Intermediate poses on at least 4 of those days
DONE, the Intermediate poses stopped when I started at the Shala
- Go to one class a week with a senior teacher (probably IM, since his class fits my schedule)
DONE, With IM for three weeks and the Shala for a week
- Go to at least one led Primary at Shala Central during the month
FAIL, but I did a week of Mysore, which counts for a lot more
- Increase my meditation practice to 15 minutes daily
DONE, in fact, I’m up to 20 minutes a day
- Practice my guitar daily
FAIL, I may need to go on a guitar hiatus; I’m feeling overwhelmed by my new schedule
- Daily walks, at least a half-hour
DONE, we walked in the park every day, even the yucky days
- Develop and launch an advanced class downtown
FAIL, this one is on hold, but I’m hopeful. I’m launching an advanced class in the west end starting mid-April
- Attend the yoga show and one or two workshops
DONE, I attended the show, but opted out of the workshops because I’ve signed up for Kino in April

I’m giving some careful thought to my ‘theme’ for April and some reasonable goals. I have a few ideas. April will be a more introspective month, I think.


Claudia said...

This is really cool. I like how you follow through on your goals. As per the guitar and the led class, one time a personal mentor told me that it is better to set goals in a way so that you are set to do them, as in for example, instead of saying "play the guitar every day", to say "open the guitar case twice a week". I find that smaller, tiny goals are more manageable and that big things tend to happen. for example, when I just say "I will open the tax return form" (that was the goal), for some reason I ended up doing it all... surpassing the goal...

Emma said...

i don't know if "fail" is the right word... maybe.. try try again?

Kaivalya said...

I kept your advice in mind for my April goals. I'm going to play my guitar, but keep my expectations very modest.

I was trying to be a bit funny, but you're right. Maybe this would be more accurate: "CONTINUED" :-)