Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Food poisoning, Day 4: The 'eat at your own peril' edition.

I seem to be fine these days unless I put anything more complicated than rice cereal or tea in my tummy.

I was feeling queasy last night, but I was fine by morning. I ate some rice cereal this morning with no ill effects, but a small plate of vegetables and tofu at lunch left me in pain for hours. *sigh*

I'm only now emerging from the fog of my wasted day. I'm glad I worked on my dropbacks in the morning and went for a walk!

When I arrived at the Shala this morning, I immediately sensed that something was amiss: No teachers. They're away for the entire week. M, the sub who covered my first week at the Shala, is here today and tomorrow. The assistant is working the rest of the week.

I was already planning to be away this weekend anyway. Depending on how my plans unfold, tomorrow may be my last Shala day this week.

It was very humid this morning and I sweated buckets during my practice. I had a good, efficient Primary - just under 90 minutes. My hamstring was feeling stiff, though.

The 'tweak' in my right shoulder is back and I felt it during the vinyasas. Initially, I wasn't going to rock in my backbends, fearing I would make it worse but I did a trial run and it was okay.

I'll be mindful of it tomorrow and if it's still bugging me, I'll 'dial down' my jumps the rest of the week during home practice.

I had one Space Cadet Moment: I skipped Utkatasana.

Second Practice:

I waited a few hours to do this, had some breakfast, drank my tea and went for a walk. Then I was ready.

I did a shoulder opener, a hip opener and Ustrasana x3. Then, lots of Urdhva Dhanurasana with a focus on walking the hands in far and maintaining a consistent breath.

The other day, I mentioned feeling like my breath was 'stuck' in my backbends. A reader mentioned Leslie Kaminoff's book, 'Yoga Anatomy'. I grabbed my copy off the shelf: Kaminoff says that in Urdhva Dhanurasana, the body is stabilized in a 'maximal inhalation' and expanding the breathe further isn't possible.

I'm going to gently disagree. Kino addressed this in her workshop. When Udiyana Bandha is engaged in backbends, the pressure of the lock shifts the organs toward the pelvis, taking that load off of the spine, but also creating more space for expansion of the lower ribs on inhalation.

That's what I was doing today and it was totally working for me (though I'll readily agree with Kaminoff that 'relaxed breathing' is preferable).

Thanks for your comment, Markus. It helped me think through this problem!

I wasn't sure how dropbacks would feel after a four day break. I did three, one after the other, easily. What a surprise! They were amazing and...dare I say it?...FUN!!

I *never* thought I would say that about dropping back! :-D

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


Ragdoll said...

"They were amazing and...dare I say it?...FUN!!"

Hooray! That's fantastic. It seems that for a lot of poses, a break can really do them good.

Arturo said...

Dear Kai
It's amazing you have the energy despite the food poisoning incindent. That's good advice passed on from Kino; I'll pay attention to engaging the root lock.

I don't know if I will miss practice tomorrow. My Mandarin tutor is leaving and two other students and I were seeing her for a goodby drink kind of late today so it may be difficult to wake up in the am.


Kaivalya said...

I was particularly excited that 'The Fear' hadn't returned. I was worried that if I didn't do dropbacks daily, I might lose my ability. What a surprise to find that a 'break' made them even better! :-)

Just to clarify: Kino was talking about Udiyana, abdominal lock.

I've been resting a LOT because of this food poisoning/angry tummy thing. Getting lots of quiet, sitting-around type of work done, though!