03 June, 2012

Hard to get within

Today was 75 minutes of Hatha plus Yin with Patrick.

I've been looking forward to this class all week. I really enjoy Patrick's Hatha because of the way his words and guidance are so specific, and almost stream of consciousness that you can either lock into the moment by focusing on his every word or, as he suggests, zone out and let his voice fade into the background. For where I am in my practice it is much more of the former than the latter, but I could imagine a time in some future where the words will become more "lulling" than instructive.

Even though it was a Sunday morning Hatha class, the energy seemed to be high in the room once again. I think the yogalympics really has people fired up.

The Hatha portion of the class had variations that were more Bikram-esque, than how we usually do it at Urban: the pranayama breathing, starting off the Side Angle by facing sideways and stepping one leg out to the side, optional toe stand from Tree pose (not in my practice yet, but figured I should mention it). To save a little time, we only did one set of that Side Angle series. It's very rare that this occurs. Plenty of other poses get one or two sets based on the particular teacher or day, but Side Angle seems to be a fixture at two sets. As such, it's always one of this little "pleasant surprises" when we don't do two. I am not sure why that's my reaction. It's not as if we are doing less yoga. I think I tend to find pyramid to be really difficult so I'm "glad" when I get a pass on that second set, with the stinging sweat dripping into my eyes (I really need to order that headband).

We skipped the traditional Hatha floor series in exchange for the Yin poses. We did just a few: Frog, seated wide-legged forward fold (center, left, and right), and Pigeon. I think that was it? But we spend a long time in each, of course.

Yin is supposed to be about getting deeper within, working on the connective tissue. At this point, many of my muscles are still so tight, that the challenge for me is to just be "ok" with not being able to go very deep with these poses. For me, "within" is into a mental rather than physical state. Loosening up the stiffness of the mind.

After class I found myself in another one of those situations where I was asking the question "Maybe a double?"

And three different people said, "Are you gonna do a double today?"

Why not?

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