One of the highlights of the weekend was the backbending workshop. Among other things, D went through the first 7 poses of the Intermediate Series in careful detail.
I was elated! When D gave me the poses in August, he instructed me in each one, but quickly and quietly. I didn't ask a lot of questions (because I didn't know what to ask!). I forgot many of the details and some of the alignment points went over my head. Unfortunately, I wasn't there long enough for follow-up.
In the workshop, we moved through these poses in sequence, so it was easy to recall each concern and query that had ever popped up as I was practising them at home. Every question I had about alignment and action in these poses was answered. It was such a gift!
I know many of you are waiting to read my thoughts/notes about the workshops. To be honest, I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed by it all right now. It was an amazing weekend in every way and I'm feeling deeply grateful to D and J for sharing their knowledge.
Rather than a five-page run of 'workshop notes', the details of what I learned are probably just going to pop up organically in my blog over the coming weeks, as I work through things in my practice. My week has already started and in between my practice, teaching and a series of medical appointments that are dominating my mornings this week, I simply won't have time to write very much.
My practice this morning spanned two-and-a-half hours! It was lengthy in part because I was tired and sore (my right psoas has been going into spasm every time I lift my leg and I have a pathetic, non-yoga-related injury to deal with too). I'm also still processing everything I had learned over the weekend and figuring out how it fits in my practice. As I practised, I was consulting notes, correcting misalignments, adding things and subtracting other things.
Hip and shoulder openers are in. Dropbacks, at least for now, are OUT. Hangbacks with properly aligned feet are in. Standing up is out until I can drop back properly (I really *was* listening carefully to the little lecture about 'splayed out feet' in backbends).
I'm even experimenting with a different approach to my meditation practice.
Even though my body is tired and I'm feeling overwhelmed by my schedule, I'm content and happy with my practice. This seems to make all the difference.
I'll get through the week just fine.
Here's something we *didn't* learn in the workshop this weekend, but then again, this isn't strictly a YOGA exercise...
I'm a bit unnerved that 'bust line improvement' seems to be a group activity.
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