Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Astanga

Every so often, the Universe sees that I’m struggling and throws me a bone. This was one of those days.

Maybe it was the Full Moon energy. Maybe it’s because of the earlier practice (I bumped up my practice time this week), but I had a fabulous practice! I was feeling STRONG

Let’s count the small victories:

-Three successful no-toe-touch jumpbacks and many strong lift-ups
-Several no-bum-to-floor jumpthroughs (a complete surprise; something was ‘clicking’ this morning)
-First time I’ve ever had a bind to wrist (WRIST!) in Marichyasana D (and both sides too!)
-Chest flat to floor (with help from teacher) then heels lifted off the floor (my own hard work) in Kurmasana
-I enjoyed a rather spectacular Garba Pindasana with my hands never leaving my head as I rolled around and then pushed straight up into Kukutasana
-I nailed every last Chakrasana without help, including the dreaded post-backbend roll
-Teacher P asked me to cross my ankles first in Supta Kurmasana. I needed help with the bind, but it was a tight, tight pose. And I lifted up by myself, though my legs fell apart immediately. Until I get my legs behind my back, a real lift-up probably won’t happen in that exit. But fun!
-I heard a “Good!” from Teacher P during backbends
-A nice lift straight up in Sarvangasana without my usual Halasana cheat (I’m figured out how to get up on my shoulders under me first before lifting into the pose)

Backbends are getting interesting! Earlier in the month, Teacher P took away sunbathing privileges between cycles of Urdhva Dhanurasana. Yesterday, Teacher R suggested that I avoid the beach entirely: no more rest between the first three backbends and the last two. Go down and right back up! Yesterday, it felt like agony, but today was okay. I do feel like I’m getting stronger.

My legs were shaking as I walked to the streetcar afterward! I went straight home and took a salt bath. Thank goodness tomorrow is a Moon Day! I need it. I’m not going *anywhere* tomorrow morning - I’m staying put (and sleeping in, though I’ll probably indulge in an extracurricular backbending practice at home).

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“Strength is a decision you make.” (from the Kino ‘strength workshop’ - thank you, Susan for the reminder)


At the rate I’m going, I’ll soon be able to open those bottles all by myself! *snark*

11 comments:

The Misanthropic Yogini said...

Congrats on the chakrasana successes! Thanks for all the notes on your jump back progress, by the way. They've helped me quite a lot.

As for the ketchup... Let me show you how a woman opens it *smashes bottle over advertiser's head*

Grimmly said...

Sounds like a whole bag of bones, : ) happy for you, had a good practice too today, something in the air perhaps.

Kaivalya said...

@MA
Glad the notes have been helpful. If you ever get the chance, Kino's workshop is phenomenal. I'm only just now starting to grasp how valuable it's been for my practice. It took a few weeks of work for the info to sink in, but I'm making leaps I wouldn't have made without it.

And I absolutely LOVE how you open ketchup! *big smile*

@Grimmly
I never gave much credence to the moon phases until I started practising daily. I really notice it now. I (and many others) seem to have good practices around the Full Moon.

teacupdiaries said...

Wow, that sounds like a wonderful practice! I've been finding your commitment to the roll through and backbends very inspiring. :) I'm getting back to yoga after an extended break and had been avoiding backbends (because they're challenging and frustrating, and all those other excuses!) but your posts encouraged me to start building up to them.

Monday, I shocked the hell out of myself by 'accidentally' pushing up into the wheel. All I meant to do was root my arms down strongly so I could come onto my head but, somehow, I pushed all the way up!! I was so shocked that I came right back down again but still. . . what a thing to discover!

Don't you love that sense of discovery that comes with each practice?

Kaivalya said...

@Teacup
Yes! Yes! Isn't it great how things just 'happen' in practice, as if by accident?

(but really through commitment and hard work - we don't see our own progress because it happens so incrementally).

daydreamingmel said...

DEFINITELY the pre-moon energy, weird good practices where everything works always are I think...And now I wish I hadn't taken a double-rest day, I'm such a lazy yogi!! Great to hear all your progress though. And 5 backbends? I'm currently wimping out and doing 1 bridge and 2 proper ones with plenty of sunbathing too...keep promising myself I'll step it up once supta k becomes less of a daily ordeal.

Boodiba said...

"sunbathing"!!! I love it. I used to stare out the skylight at Peridance, taking a little rest on my back before starting. Chris would come over & block my view. "I'm going to separate you," he'd say.

Congrats on the lovely full moon practice. They really are quite nice sometimes, WAY better than new moon practices. I'm quite happy to be lazy down in NYC though :)

Kaivalya said...

@Mel
The Full Moon stuff is even more fun to observe in my students! The little kid yogis are all crazypants during a Full Moon, bouncing off the walls.

In my Intro Ashtanga class, suddenly everyone was binding in Mari C and I asked for a show of hands for first-time binders in that pose. Everyone!

Next Full Moon, I'm buying me a lottery ticket!

@Boodi
Thanks! :-) And yes, MUCH better than New Moon practices.

I love the skylight story! I try to get as much 'window' as I can at Shala Central, and then I try not to get busted for looking out at the scenery.

Boodiba said...

Ya... there are poses in which all C would have to do would be approach and let me see the hairy toes. I would know myself busted :)

word veri: happidis

Kaivalya said...

I think Shala teachers have special peripheral vision siddhis! Mine definitely do.

Re: the word veri - See? Even Blogger knows that you had a happy practice today!!!

Boodiba said...

Oh God yes & some more than others. In the first few months of my practicing with C, when he was basically yelling at me for two hours a day, half in English & half in Sanskrit, he'd "catch" me making vinyasa transgressions with his back to me, assisting someone else maybe 20' away in the back row. It was eerie! How did he do that? Eyes in back of head? Perhaps hidden under the hair?

Yes "happidis" sounds like Buckwheat. Happiness with a bit of nasal congestion :)