Monday, December 19, 2011

The Crane Has Landed

I practiced a little later than usual today and shortly after I entered the shala JB had actually begun his own practice and his mat was set up to my left and slightly behind me. No I didn't feel any pressure at all. I did take it easy during the vinyasas of primary series because I have two slightly tweaked hands and my problematic right ribs were feeling a little twingey as well. Other than that practice felt pretty good.

I managed to bind both sides of pashasana on my own and stay upright. It's funny because JB assisted me in pashasana yesterday and  his assist is pretty intense to say the least and when I do the pose on my own it feels like a completely different pose. What I do probably shouldn't even be called pashasana. Perhaps I should just start calling it "pash" but I digress. I did kapo 2.5 times on my own and it's coming along. I'm now able to hang back into the pose to get a nice opening and breathe at the same time. A few weeks ago this was a challenge to say the least. I'm also able to ever so slightly walk my hands further up my feet than before. After JB's supta vajrasana assist I commented to him that there's gotta be a better way to do that pose because when I do it, it mostly feels like my elbow is going to pierce my spine. He in turn told me what I already knew which is that I need to work on getting the elbows to cross over each other and once that happens I'll experience a lot more opening in the pose but until then I"ll have to endure the ancient elbow torture techniques.

After our little supta vajrasana discussion I did bakasana a two or three times in an attempt to lift both feet off the floor at the same time. During my last attempt I sort of had an epiphany regarding how to straighten my arms more in the pose. What I did, and I don't think I was consciously aware of it, was to rotate my arms so that my inner arms were facing forward. I did that as opposed to just straightening my arms and having my inner arms face each other. This is something that I definitely intend to experiment with tomorrow. I then got two blankets and attempted the dreaded bakasana b pose. Attempt one; fail. Attempt two; fail. Attempt three; landed the legs on my, held it for half a breath and then rolled on to my head. I looked over to my right to catch eye contact with my shalamate/assistant who was practicing next to me and instead of getting a sympathetic look he proceeded to snicker at me. Attempt four; abandoned. Attempt five; I landed the crane and held on for dear life for the full five breaths. Surprisingly JB saw the whole thing go down and said something along the lines of "good job" and proceeded to give me the next two poses.

The thing is I feel like a complete fraud because a) I don't know if or when I'll ever be able to land bakasana b again and b) I haven't even attempted it yet without blankets in front of me to buffer my fall.  So now not only do I have to worry about trying to land bakasana again I get to start stressing out about the impossibility of jamming my legs behind my head. The good news is that JB is taking off for three weeks at the end of the month so I won't have to cross that bridge until next year. 

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