16 November, 2012

Working my way backwards

Today was Power Vinyasa + Meditation with GUEST TEACHER.

Ok. Guest teacher was actually named Cole. I guess he was going through a potential new teacher evaluation with Scott and Michel (who were both in the class). I was curious about who a guest teacher might be, and eager for the experience, since most of these unexpected experiences have been good ones.

Turns out, class was really good tonight. Even though I have been pretty much hurting for days, and days, and days, this day was a little better. Who knows why? I certainly don't. I don't think I took any ibuprofen today, which is usually what makes things better.

From the Iyengar book, I have been thinking about the breath a lot lately. Reading about the different stages of the breath really makes me more conscious about them. Especially these elements like holding the breath at both the top and bottom of the cycle, and about exhaling just a little bit further at the end of the exhale after pausing. I have tried this while reading the book, and now I have been trying it while on the mat. It's easy to do in Child's Pose or Savasana. What's harder to do is pay attention to the breath in the same way, hitting the same points, during a pose like Crescent Lunge, or Chair. But it's just as relevant there. In particular, I have always felt like it is hard to go through a Sun B because, at the end of the Downward Dog, I am out of air from an exhale, but am supposed to continue exhaling as I step forward, before inhaling up to Warrior I. But now it makes a little more sense, because I can imagine that step forward as being that little extra exhale at the end of a breath. Instead of being freaked out that my timing is off, wondering what I did wrong, did I exhale too quickly, am I suffocating, I am now just taking it as the natural step in the process.

An interesting transition.

Being a new teacher, Cole, who is actually just moving here from New York, brought a slightly different dialog to the classroom than I have heard elsewhere. "Halfway Lift" was "Prepare your spine." But the words don't really matter. In some way, I feel like "prepare your spine" has an interesting different connotation to it. I think about that motion differently when it's a "preparation" than I might for a "halfway lift." Halfway why? Lifting why? Why halfway? Not all the way? Well, I guess it's because I am preparing my spine. For what, I guess I will have to ponder some more.

Anyway, after a long series of rough days... days I didn't even want to write about... a pretty good day.

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