Thursday, August 22, 2013

Au Contraire

For the first time in a good long while practice feels good again. That's not to say that everything is perfect or that I'm not faced with challenges when I get on my mat but overall things feel good and not broken. This is good news because I've spent the better part of the year just feeling broken. 

A few months back, shortly after recovering from "the great back injury of 2013" I was encouraged to split my practice and to start going straight into intermediate series.  On the surface this seemed like a great idea because I had the longest practice ever but I was a little apprehensive because of my chronically tight hamstrings. My fear was that if I stopped doing all of the forward bends in primary, the ones that caused my hamstrings to be perpetually sore, I would lose all flexibility that I had gained over the past couple of years of practice. 

To my surprise that hasn't been the case at all. If anything I'm finding more length and flexibility than I ever imagined and after practice I'm not left with achy and sore hamstrings for days and days on end. Who would have thought? 

The other surprising turn of events is that I'm finding that I haven't lost any strength and in some respects feel even stronger. I think it all boils down to having a shorter, more manageable practice that isn't taxing my body to the point of utter exhaustion and then getting up and doing the same thing day after day after day. 

In other news, titibasana still makes me feel like I want to puke. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

An Update

After a brief hiatus I'm back. For how long I'm unsure but we'll take this one day at a time.

A lot has changed since my last post over a year ago and at the same time it feels as not much has changed at all. As for the changes I'm practicing with a new teacher at a new shala due to my teacher leaving town and taking on a new job that doesn't involve teaching an ashtanga mysore program. Trust me, if just moved out of state and continued to to teach odds are I would have tried to figure outa way to follow him somehow.  So that about sums up the changes.

As for things staying the same, I really haven't progressed much in terms of acquiring new asanas during this time. I'd chalk it up to a) being hazed by new teacher b) a plethora of injuries c) having the tightest hips on the planet.  In April of this year I was sidelined for about 6 weeks due to "the great back injury of 2013" which I attribute to overuse and being pushed just a little too hard one day. The good news is that the back has mostly healed and my practice continues to improved. Things have improved so much that new teacher has finally decided to give me a new pose. After seeing my feeble attempts at titibasana a, b and c over the past week I'm almost certain he's regretting his decision.

After being marooned, for what feels like an eternity, in this section of second series I'm really looking forward to working on the strength poses that come after such as pincha mayurasana and karandavasana because let's be honest I've always tended to be more strong than flexible. I won't be holding my breath though because I think it will take at least another year to develop the flexibility required to be able to do my current new pose.