Sunday, November 15, 2009

495/261: Smooth Sunday.

One of those Sundays where I was very tempted to linger in bed, take another day of bed rest from the Friday and Saturday's asthma difficulties - treated with multiple tisanes, water, soup, rest and more episodes of Lost than should probably be watched in one sitting.

SilentSpeaker easily convinced me over GChat to practice - basically reminding me that I could stop at any point I wanted to - my original plan was to go simply do Primary. Breath came so
rhythmically almost like a metronome, each pose floated into another. I ended up easily smoothly practicing through laghu vajrasana and as I move to backbends D comes over and adds kapotasna a and kapotasna b. Very surprised and excited by this - still trying to work on the illusive "stall" thing when transitioning between ustrasana, laghu and kapotasana.

Thinking maybe break dancing lessons next..
or maybe give capioera another shot...

After three long holds in urdhva dhanurasana, three quick standing to dropbacks and immediately into assisted, and down half way on the last drop, D grabs my wrists and firmly plants my hands right to the lower calves. Of course, my hands slipped down a bit, and heels came up a teeny tiny bit - but oh, that hold was glorious.

There's been a bit of a return to backbending work in the cybershala - and after this morning's fairly successful exploration of tiriang mukhottanasana (LOY 418-9) decided to see where things are in the backbending department.

Started with a little chair work from Iyengar class, really working to try to get the pelvis tucked, extension through the front body, spine deep into the backbody, and lots of rotation through the shoulders.

video

And then of course, a little play with urdhva dhanurasana and dropbacks.

video

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

492/259: Rules Pondered.

We hated Bauhaus. It was a bad time in architecture... All they had were rules. Even for knives and forks they created rules. Picasso would never have accepted rules. The house is like a machine? No! The mechanical is ugly. The rule is the worst thing. You just want to break it.

Oscar Niemeyer.

* * *

Why do we push the boundaries? Over time, the chance of radical breakthroughs seems to increase as rules and their nuances are simply and slowly explored. The "rules" in place are pushed to the limits and ultimately broken - but concurrent to the exploration/deconstruction a new structure comes into formation. So, really, the original structure doesn't completely disappear - pieces remain.

Each successive pose feeds another - how they all link together - how opening/strength in one assists multiple other poses down the sequence. But can and usually does deepen expression in earlier poses.

There's truly a lot of depth to Primary.


To be honest, I'm not the biggest fan Intermediate yet.
There I said it.

Back on 10.28 D added parsva dhanurasana, ustrasana, and laghu vajrasna to my practice. I was ok having through dhanruasana. Prior to that, it didn't really "feel" like I "had" a second series - those first poses seemed more like an amuse-bouche.

Don't get me wrong I think parsva dhanurasana is quite enjoyable, while laghu vajrasna is pleasantly kicking my butt - or more specifically the rectus femoris, satoris, and would venture the tensor fasciae latae (thank you AP Bio anatomy textbook). From Primary, lolasana and bhuja pindasana are still slightly enigmatic to me. But, Intermediate seems to be doing amazing things for my backbending - Simply? Wow.


As I type this, I think - maybe it is the rules and their nuance that are close to the core of the beauty of this system.
As a result, there's hope for Intermediate.

After all, Niemeyer works in concrete with grids and structure - just with a different perspective on the rules.