Archive for June, 2015

“Flexibility is a very temporary result of yoga, but the patterns last forever.”  Richard Freeman


So the last session with that Iyengar teacher was sort of amazing.  But I am always amazed and impressed by yoga teachers who are REALLY experienced and have taught a LONG TIME and have WATCHED AND LEARNED FROM STUDENTS.  Like they KNOW what is wrong by looking at students and how to FIX it.  So here is my moment. I always have them.  She tells us to get bolsters for supta virasana and I am like oh f—- my knees.   I had just come off a month, literally the day before, of my Hot yoga challenge. One of the things I was looking for, besides getting my back bending back, which I DID, was getting more flexion in my knees. I got a MINIMAL amount.  I can not lay back in Hot yoga in this pose and can sit on two blocks on a good day.  Three on a bad. In Iyengar they want you to wrap your knees close in a strap and lay on bolsters.  So I get the blocks out and she says to go get as many bolsters as I need to lie back.  I get three. Because how can you even stack three let alone four and I come back and she says what is wrong with my knees. I tell her arthritis and she says out loud does anyone else here have arthritis in their knees and of course there are several laying back on bolsters that raise their hand.  She looks at me and says “you have to work on your issues”.  DING DING DING DING She says to the group of teachers YOU ALL have to work on your issues.  Most of us are insecure about our issues.  But students have them.  What we learn HERE, by watching and paying ATTENTION will allow us to help our students later.  This manner of learning to teach, through the eyes of someone EXPERIENCED, allows for continual revelation. It is the small things. Lack of action, lack of intention, lack of consciousness.  There is SO MUCH TO LEARN.  You learn as much from your own practice as others. I know teachers who DON’T practice.




And I am like oh yeah, just avoiding the issues won’t help the issues. I say this all the time when I am teaching.
So since that day I decided to just do Iyengar yoga pretty much and focus on these issues.  And study Iyengar. It is funny how those teachers can refer to Light on Yoga for pretty much any answer.  She says, do you all have the book? Well PICK IT UP once in a while.  So funny.  HAHA what good is the book doing on the shelf. She says she is on her THIRD COPY she has used them so much.



And then, you know I have this constant struggle with what to practice.  And I keep finding out my FAVORITE Ashtanga teachers also practice IYENGAR or have studied it.  (Freeman, Ezraty, Garrigues)  SO yesterday I am watching this AMAZING Maty Ezraty interview:



I studied with her last summer. The five day teaching immersion it was VERY little how to I bind in Marichy B/D.  Actually it was NONE of that, but it was more how to work through your issues with alignment rather than just push through it.  So in the interview she talks about the differences and then how to STUDY one form to make the other BETTER.  And she is so right. There is no right path.  I have seen a lot of discussion on inversions and whether they are safe blah blah blah and then some cop out nonsense on NOT teaching them. So do you not practice yourself? Is that a good idea?  What is a teacher? I don’t know.  So then I see this from Garrigues:


“But inversions, they – I mean, it kinda gets into a whole subject, but they have to be done properly, but if they are done properly, they’re the most amazing anti-aging thing, like, incredible health-giving benefits and youth – keeping you youthful, but – so the Iyengar people do it in the afternoon just ’cause it takes longer, and so it is a nice time to do it if you can carve out the time, just because, like you guys were saying, the Ashtanga practice is so demanding, and so it’s a – what I think is – I think it’s the kind of worst thing in a way, the biggest shadow aspect, or one of them, is the – how the inversions are getting kind of cut out of the practice or getting way less emphasis because of how tiring the practice is and how much emphasis is being put on the postures and the series, and then by the time you get to that part, you’ve spent it all. And so I am not a big fan of that. I think that, especially as you get older – and partly because the practice – remember, it’s not about – I mean, its main thing is about meditation, really, and meditation does require stopping the body, you know what I mean? There is moving meditation, but really, at some point, you just have to stop your body and stop the thoughts going through.” – David Garrigues

So doing the extra practice.  Studying. Svadhyaya.  WORK ON YOUR STUFF.  Watch.  Be conscious.  Be aware.  PRACTICE


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