Thursday, November 12, 2009

Evolution of a Backbend (After Much Rambling)

The new shala is great. It's got a light feel to it, we're facing a balcony that has gorgeous plants and a water feature... the whole space feels like it's a lot bigger than the previous shala (coz it is!) It can now comfortably fit slightly more than 30 people, with loads of room to move around in (I'm sure if we squeezed we could get 40 - 50 mats in. But why would you wanna do that?)

BUT... I guess this is also part of the teething problems/ working out a new space issues. Today I felt like I needed to put on my sunglasses and sunscreen during practice. That would've been funny. Get my bling on.

I've been moving around, practicing in different spots of the shala, just to get a feel for the different areas. I don't like being in the center-front of the room. When the sun rises, it hits directly onto that spot where I was at today and I kept having to move my mat around, running away from the sun. (I build up a lot of internal heat already, no need to also feel my skin sizzling on top of that!) I hope they're planning on getting window blinds! (maybe the dark corners will become "my spot".) (Yes yes, I have to conquer non-attachment.)

What I like about it is there's no more separate room for the closing sequence, we just move to the back of the room after backbends. Which means that after practice, I now have the chance to look around the room and people-watch. Yes, totally illegal, but hey, I don't stay and gawk either... so it allows me to take a quick glance around the room without having to feel like I need to leave asap for the next person to take my spot.

There are a lot of "new" faces. "New" only because maybe I never noticed them before (since the shala got super packed and as explained before I had to leave immediately for the next person to take my spot)... so maybe they've always been there I just never noticed. But... I recognize a few faces from Sharath's workshop. Maybe they ARE new and came to our shala because of it.

It's kind of cool that our teacher is not charging for these first couple of weeks while they work out how the new space works. There are workmen still fixing up the showers and retail space downstairs (they start drilling whenever I get to Savasana. Ugh). There'll be an opening party next weekend which I've volunteered to help out at, so maybe I'll get a chance to show you pictures of the lovely new space!

At yesterday's practice, teacher's assistant (let's call her TA) wouldn't let me do handstands. "Not until you dropback on your own." (She's HARDCORE! Teacher had been helping me with handstands!) But yes, TA is also right. ...so today, when it came to dropbacks, TA said "OK, let's see how you're going today"... she didn't hold onto me at all while I dropped back, and at that last part as I dropped into the abyss, I felt her hands on the sides of my legs, a cue to bring more awareness to them.

And I didn't fall onto my head. Yay!

She said "You did it!" She was being kind. I know I didn't. If she hadn't been there, I would've dropped onto my head.

It's weird dropping back with less assistance - I think I'm locking my elbows coz my landing suddenly felt like rock solid concrete. Not at all soft & gentle (if I bend my elbows, I'll drop on my head!)

I dunno how many times we did this now - 3 times? 5 times? My head was spinning by the end of it. I needed her help to stand up from backbends coz she was making me turn my feet in and that's so much #%^$%!@ harder. (Dammit Feet! Stop splaying out!) So... less glutes, more quads & core! DAMMIT! ...yeah, my solo standing up from backbends have been a case of CHEATING since my feet splay out.

I will nail this. Today is just another day... by the way, this is also the 10th day in a row I've practised full Primary. While Sharath was here, we practised on the Saturdays so my last break was that last moon day. No rest for da wickid... looking forward to this Saturday!!
P.S. Check out the Kapotasana of the guy (?) in the electric-blue... um... hotpants. Yow-zer! (both the asana and the outfit)

(Photo credit here)

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