Monday afternoon I had the pleasure of attending Peggy Kelly's advanced Iyengar Yoga class which was a most excellent and creative journey to Natrajasana, once again proving the point that open groins=happy back bends. I have never done that much groin work to prepare for that pose but when we got to the pinnacle pose, I was super ready for it and it felt great. Plus what a delight after three straight weeks of long teaching days to be a student and receive instruction. I re-did the sequence in my own practice yesterday adding some poses that seemed to make sense and it was great.
Here is her sequence and my additions with an asterisk. She said hers was a combination of ideas of her own and Senior Iyengar teacher Kofi Busia's sequence to natrajasana.
- *Supta padangusthasana series with bottom leg weighted, foot on wall
- *prasarita padottanasana
- Surya Namaskar- 10 X (Iyengar-style with jumping, not flowing)
- Rope 1 - 20X (Which I cannot do at home so I worked up dog/down dog on a chair- 20X)
- paryankasana over a block -5 minutes
- baddha konasana- hips elevated on block
- baddha konasana- hips on floor
- baddha konasana- feet elevated on block
- janu sirsasana variation with bent leg foot elevated on block
(Note- the whole emphasis here was on deepening the inner groins and "un -tucking the tailbone" and reaching the sitting bones back which in my world is called Inner Spiral! Oh and as a side note, guess what Martin told us in anatomy training- John told him not to call them sitz bones in the anatomy book and said to say "ischial tuberosity" or "sit bones" but not "sitz bones." Which I think is excellent because I have never said or liked the term "sitz bones" for the very reason John gave him- IT IS NOT A WORD! But I digress.)
- * eka pada supta virasana variations
- quad stretches in lunge with back shin on the wall, reaching arms up
- trikonasana-ardha chandrasana-vira 3-parivritta ardha chandrasana-vira 3-ardha chandrasana-trikonasana (All on one leg in a row. Yes, your front leg will feel like it is in a Baptiste class!)
- same standing pose sequence with ball of the foot on a slant board
- same standing pose sequence with heel of foot on slant board (if you do not have a slant board, use a blanket roll and yes, it will make the balance a lot harder/nearly impossible and yes your leg will feel like it is dying but this teaches you a lot about the front leg of natrajasana which I think was Kofi's point here.)
- ustrasana 2X
- urdhva danurasana 2x
- eka pada urdhva danurasana
- dwi pad viparita dandasana 2X
- *drop backs 5X
- natrajasana 3X
- uttanasana, hips back on wall
- parsva uttanasana, hips back on wall
- ardha halasana with thighs on chair
Yesterday I spent the whole morning catching up on email correspondences.I actually made it through most of them and then ate lunch with Kelly, and finsished some work on my computer before I started my asana practice. After that, Kelly and I got on our mountain bikes and took a ride on the greenbelt which was really fun. (I probably un-did all the great groin opening, but oh well, plenty of fun things in life make for tight muscles!) Then we made dinner and then I went over to Mom and Dad's house to watch Night two of a PBS special on Mormonism, which is one of my curiosities. Of course, I am more into the Fundamentalist sects where polygamy is still practiced and the women still wear prairie dresses and so forth and this was a more mainstream presentation of the faith but nonetheless, it was very interesting. (See, just another random glimpse into my inner life here in blog land. I mean who knew she was fascinated by religious cults of all kinds? Well, actually I am.)
All right, well, onward with the day now I suppose. I need to write a sequence and class plan for Focus On Form and the 6pm Level 2-4 class.
Have a great day!