The course is coming to its end and we are nearly finished with yoga studies and practice. You would imagine that the body is out of energy and sore by now. However, I was quite pleased with my practice. If you add some dancing to the equation, it might be a different story altogether…
Hard work yields result
I have learned loads during these 4 weeks and many things are starting to make sense. I was struggling with my jump through or floating, and was getting a bit frustrated with it. But Ewa pointed out that my drishti ie. gaze was not in the right place and, by changing this, the whole thing made a huge difference.
After breakfast, we had a led class. I was wondering how it would go but I was pretty much full power, not tired. Furthermore, we had a test which went quite well. It certainly has been an advantage to me that I remember most of the asanas and the count from before. I think many of the girls have had lots of studying to do. I don’t know how they have managed to memorise both the physical asana practice and all the other information. Well done!
Dancing affects the body!
We had the afternoon off which was refreshing. I actually sneaked to the dance floor as my favourite club happened to be on (its only once a month and I couldn’t make it to the previous one nor will I make it to the next one. See how I’m defending myself, haha). I managed to get home early enough but definitely felt the effects in my practice the next morning. My body felt heavy and tired. I really had to concentrate to pull it through.
I bet some people wouldn’t consider this as very yogic behaviour. Nor would they think I was doing my “tapas”, discipline very orderly. I think some yoga schools wouldn’t allow this at all during teacher training. I could’ve gone the 4 weeks without dancing and save all my energy for the yoga practice. This is not what I wanted, though.
I think all of us need to find the right balance. I don’t believe in rules that forbid one thing completely. That always raises my suspicion. It can easily lead to a mindset that considers your way to be better and others’ inferior. I used to be vegan when I was younger and in retrospect, I think I was probably a bit annoying with my beliefs, and most likely, at least occasionally preaching about animal rights and welfare. Hence, today, when I see that kind of behaviour it can make me cringe. I believe everything in moderation is the key, and try to follow this in my own life as well.
About the practice again… Coco went through some of the remaining asanas with me and Daniela. Very useful information. She was also talking about the vinyasa and breath count. While the ability to retain breath has grown through the breathing exercises it is time for us to start making the vinyasa with the correct count. I had actually thought about this before, that I should start paying more attention to this. More challenges ahead but I am pleased with these. The practice will become better with these changes, more flowing.
I have actually really enjoyed the breathing exercises. The difference is huge. You feel like you haven’t used your lungs before. In Sama Vritti exercise we control the breath and try to make the inhalations and exhalations gradually longer. In Pranayama we retain the breath as long as possible, both after exhaling our lungs empty and when we still have air in the lungs.
I was able to retain the breath for one minute in the latter way. Amazing how your body can adapt and improve. Breathing exercises work like meditation as well. You need to concentrate on the breath and be in the moment. Very good practice for anyone who wishes to have a break during a hectic day. Just stop for a moment and pay attention to your breath. It gives you a sense of calmness and tranquility.
Ok, now it’s just the final push and we are done. At the moment I’m confident that there won’t be any insurmountable obstacles left. We can make it! I’m even starting to think if I could’ve have absorbed some more information or done something better. I don’t think that’s possible, though. The syllabus is so full. I think we are information overloaded already. There is only so much one can do in such a short time. Santosa, contentment. This is good. This is enough.