Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Astanga




This is the 1000th post of this blog.

On June 14, 2007, I started the blog with a few assumptions:
-I would document my experience of Astanga, a style of yoga I loathed, as a learning exercise.
-I would write 365 posts documenting my experience practising the Primary Series.
-No one would read this silly thing.

Fast forward to today:
-I love Astanga yoga and believe that, practiced correctly, it's incredibly therapeutic and life changing - and I'm still at it!
-I've written 1000 entries. Each one represents a yoga practice. Not all of them were Astanga (I practise other styles on Saturdays, Moon Days and my LH) but most were.
-On average, 350 readers visit this blog every day.

Thanks to my blog, I've come to know some amazing people, both online and in person. I've made a handful of very good friends, and I've expanded my community far and wide.

Writing this blog has helped me to connect with my yoga practice in a deeper way. Yoga, and writing about it, has become a daily practice in the truest sense. I haven't missed a day of practice in almost two years and over the past year, I've been steadfast in my commitment to a 'six day' Astanga practice. I haven't skipped a day! In a funny way, the blog helps keep me accountable.

In my inbox, I have a great number of emails from people who were considering trying Astanga, or trying a more traditional Mysore Style practice. Reading this blog convinced them to reach out and ask me questions or take the leap on their own.

More than anything else, it pleases me to know that my blog has been helpful to others and, in a very small way, it has helped spread the word about Astanga vinyasa yoga.

Thank you for reading, for commenting and for being part of my 'Cybershala'!

1000 entries is pretty awesome!! :-D

********************
Okay, enough nostalgia. Practice report!

I had a good practice today. Perhaps not surprisingly, the Turtle was a bit finicky this morning (I ate a LOT of food yesterday). The rest of Primary was smooth and comfortable.

I've been experimenting with taking Navasana 5 times (instead of 3) as a strength builder. I wasn't enjoying it for the first couple of days, but I'm finding it easier now. I think it's probably a good thing. I've noticed that Uttita Hasta Padangusthasana C has been easier.

I skipped my 3 minute headstand yesterday, but brought it back today. It's becoming more comfortable again.

I avoided futzing in my practice today and it felt much better. Towards the end of my practice yesterday, I felt scattered and lethargic and I think the futzing was to blame (or was I futzing because I was lethargic? what came first, the futzing chicken or futzing egg?!).

Backbends were better. Deep Urdhva Dhanurasana, three solid dropbacks, and three solid standups from the futon. I left the cushion on again today because the bare futon frame was freaking me out too much. Instea, after my three standups, I took Urdhva Dhanurasana from the floor and worked on rocking forward.

I'm starting to get my head wrapped around what needs to happen for me to stand from the floor. The first part is momentum, to get the hips over the ankles. After that, it's all engagement of the legs and 'lift'. I'm still figuring out how to get this lift. Is it gravity? Is it Bandhas? Is it MAGIC? (I think it's magic!).



- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

15 comments:

Claudia said...

Congratulations Kai, I just retweeted you too on this, 1000 is a fantastic blogging and practice achievement, I guess the writing and the practice have a way of going together, don't you think?... I look forward to more ashtangakai :-) you go!

fivefootwo said...

A learning exercise becomes a learning tool for others. Congratulations on your 1000 and an equal number of thanks!

Loo said...

Congrats Kai! You are an inspiration in every way. Your dedication and honesty are amazing, thank you for all you do.

Boodiba said...

You've got a ton of readers GF!

Writing is such a great form of self expression isn't it? I'm grateful for all the connections I've made too.

Ragdoll said...

Definitely magic. There is no other explanation.

Congratulations on 1,000 posts! And thank you for being an inspiration. Your commitment is incredible.

Isabelle Debrosse Hardesty said...

Congratulations on your 1000th post!!
~Isabelle
http://ht.ly/2SxVk

kt said...

Congratulations on your 1000th post! I just started a blog 3 days ago to track my own thoughts and progress, and I can't imagine anyone actually wanting to read it... but I can get totally absorbed in the details of someone else's practice, so who knows? Your blog is one of my faves - thanks for being so diligent with the posting!

sarah said...

congratulations indeed! 1000 is amazing - to practice without fail, to write and draw out the core and the details of the self in action, BRAVA!!

and you have opened the box of curiosity for me about Ashtanga in ways that just weren't there before.

sometimes we just have to walk the path and not know.

practiceandalliscoming said...

Congratulations! Your devotion is inspiring, and thank you for the amazing gift of your blog and the teaching that lies in the record you keep of your experience.

Grimmly said...

Congratulations on the three zeros, hadn't realized your blog went back as far as it did, starting to have a peak at your early posts now : )

Rand(Om) Bites said...

Congratulations and thank you for sharing so much with us. I really appreciate your blog being so personal and not just going through the motions of explaining how to do a pose generally. I love your honesty, determination and focus in the way you approach your practice. I hope you feel you get as much back as you give out by blogging, it sure sounds like you have :-) x

Kaivalya said...

Thanks for the kind comments, everyone! And thanks for reading - writing wouldn't be as much fun without your presence and feedback :-)

Keep at it, KT. Blogging gets better the more you do it - it builds on itself.

:-)

kt said...

Thanks for the encouragement to keep blogging, Kai. Several times every day I have had to stop myself from taking the thing offline from sheer horror at my own hubris at thinking anyone would want to read it. I'll keep plugging away at it for a while... :-)

Grimmly said...

congratulations on the 1000th post, thanks for sharing so much of your practice.

Arturo said...

Dear Kai
Happy Bloggie Birthday. I unfortunately cannot do as detailed practice reports as you do because I have about 120 seconds do report right after practice, at work, before beginning work. I am learning new nuances of the practice and could write about it, but by the time I get to the office, I tend to forget them. They usually have to do with concentration on the breath.

hugs
Arturo
word verif: cidents, no inci-