Wednesday, 13 May 2009

My first Mysore class

I made it to my first Mysore class this morning. Phillippa, who normally teaches this class, is away in Mysore right now so it was taught by her assistant. I got there about 7 and there were enough people in the room to give a good energy, but not so many I felt I couldn't get any attention. I did my practice, up through utthitaparsvakonasana (extended side angle) in the Fundamental Postures.

In Ashtanga, everyone does the same Fundamental Postures, then there are 4 sequences (Primary, Intermediate, Advanced A and Advanced B) before some finishing postures. You take the poses as they are given by the teacher. So far, I've learned the first 5 postures in the Fundamental group (there are 11).

I struggled a bit to remember the order, and what to do (inhale/exhale) when, which is quite sad really considering I'm only doing 5 postures ('postures' is a bit of a mistranslation, because most of them involve quite a bit of movement). But Brett, the teacher, came over and helped me put my hands in the right place and get the most out of each pose. At the beginning, I was quite stiff (that's what I get for doing yoga 2 days over the weekend then nothing until Wednesday) but after 10 Sun Salutations I could actually reach the floor again.

All-in-all, my practice took about 35-ish minutes. I know it will get longer as I get better, and I work on lengthening my breath. I am feeling it a bit in my back today, which tells me I should focus on engaging my core more, especially in all the up-dogs. I also really need some help in the moving between low-plank, up-dog, and down-dog. You're supposed to just kind of roll over your toes. Yeah, right.

But I can't wait to go back on Friday! Must not over-do it and get burned out, and also there's the small matter of wanting to run a half-marathon or two this fall...

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