I have been missing yoga. I do it at home periodically, but home practice is not nearly as good as being in a class where the instructor makes you do poses that are harder than you wanted to do, and makes you do them the right way.
I had been going to classes offered by Justine, who is Australian and yells things like “Blossom your bottoms” while you are doing downward facing dog, or in Sanskrit Adho Mukha Svanasana.
So many poses in yoga are things you will see either your dog, cat, or kid do. Seriously. Downward facing dog is exactly what you think – your dog is stretching, front feet stretched out in front of him, head low to the ground, butt up in the air and the back stretched out long.
My favorite is Savasana, or Corpse pose. You always do this at the end of practice and you lay flat on your back, or with a rolled blanket under your knees if you have back issues. You relax, soften your eyes, breath and try to not think about all the things you are going to do after class but just BE. It is HARD. In India people will spend all day in this pose, with cows wandering by, kids running around and general mayhem occurring all around. And yet they lay there, meditating, or not thinking, just being. But let’s be honest: the reason it is my favorite is I get to lay down and do nothing for 5 minutes after having worked hard for the past 60 minutes. It is bliss on toast.
I get itchy during Savasana. It is partly because I just spent an hour exercising, but it is also psychological. My nose or face usually. I have to scratch. It is impossible for me to ignore it. So perhaps you can argue I fail in Savasana, but I don’t really care. LAYING STILL FOR 5 WHOLE MINUTES.
Anyway, I am going back to yoga. I am going back to class with Justine, although she has expanded enough that she has other instructors now, so I will be taking class with Nadia. What I am also doing is taking class for free in exchange for providing some sort of service to the studio. I told Justine about wanting to come back, but not really being able to pay $17 a class, once a week. I couldn’t justify it with Bob not working. The nice thing about Justine is that she is really trying to grow a community, and is in the process of opening a new studio so that we won’t be doing yoga in the fellowship room of a church anymore. And she needs people to do things. So we are working out an exchange of services. I get to take a class, and she gets something from me. I may work at checking people in for a class, or manage the Facebook fan page which needs HELP.
I went tonight for the first time in probably two years and it was hard but good. I will be sore tomorrow. If anyone tries to tell you yoga is not a work out they are either lying or doing it all wrong. I will be putting a yoga post here periodically to talk about how it is going and what I am learning.