Well, a fun night last night. I had a great therapy appointment yesterday followed by my two favorite classes. Of course on Tuesday nights I always feel like those are my favorite classes but really, the Thursday 4:30 advanced class is such a long-standing class that I just love it. I always feel like it is "home" in a certain way. I did feel a little sorry for the newcomers yesterday as I had a definite mission in mind and we worked super hard and deep. I had hoped to get us to viparita chakrasana yesterday but we ran out of time and so we only got to do like oh-ten urdhva danurasanas or something.
I keep saying it but the advanced class at 4:30 is really insane. Somehow the way that I teach it, the focus that people bring to it and the caliber of practitioner in the group creates this kind of atmosphere where things are possible that should not be. We were deep into back bends in about 40 minutes yesterday with people saying they felt great. We do stuff in that class we have no business doing in the amount of time we are allotted but still it works somehow. The funniest thing I thought was at the end when I was saying how this was "not a balanced practice" and "if we only had a little more time" then we would have used it for more back bending! I was going to say that if we had more time I would have used it to give counter balancing poses and so forth but then I thought to myself- who am I kidding??? I would have just used the extra time to take the back bends deeper.
I worked with them of authenticity at 4:30 and the paradox that while we do yoga to discover our authentic self, we use techniques to guide that inquiry.
At 6:00 we made a foray into some basic standing poses and arm balances and refined up dog some. It was a zany class that was hardly my most professional effort but it was a lot of fun. I think the sequence was great, the instruction was great and people had breakthroughs but my presentation was hardly the "calm centered yoga teacher" . I was really on a roll and on a rant about things and then my long-time students were kind of egging me on and so the train really went off the tracks at a few junctures. (I will probably get a comment card or two filled out on that one!) But wow- we had a good time!
I used the theme of inner strength at 6:00 since I was introducing some hard poses like eka hasta bhujasana and eka pada koundinyasana. We use the demands of asana to cultivate not just physical strength but strength of will, of purpose and so on to meet the demands of life. And also we have to balance that with discernment as we go along so that we know how best to apply that strength in any situation.
Thanks to the Double Dippers- Kelly, Anne, Tabatha, Jesse, Catherine, Pamela, Susan. Thanks to everyone who came to class. Can't wait for more next week.