c’mon mom…i told you, no jumping in to it, don’t splay out the elbows and get your foot off that wall. c’mon you can do it…. yep, joe is now my new yoga coach. har. (photo taken on feb. 12, 2012)
important note: this is NOT how to do a headstand!
Like most yoga practitioners, one of my early goals in the practice was to find my way into inversions. And boy, did I try to figure it out. In fact, I often tried to force this to happen (in my head, of course, I wasn’t forcing it). Did I ever make it? Yes, I think I did. But to be honest, I think I literally learned to stand on my head and not really do a headstand. I was squishing in to and compressing my neck, my shoulders would hunch in, my ribs would pop open and my ankles would sickle in like crazy. And there was no way on earth I was using my core nor spreading out my toes! But because I had my head on the floor and my feet in the air, I felt I was doing it. But yeah, checking out my photos now that I know better made me realize how wrong I was!
It was devastating to me when one of my teachers advised me against doing it. For one, I wasn’t strong enough yet, and two, I did have some structural limitations that needed extra working on before getting my feet up in the air. She said my arms were too short, I needed to work on my shoulders, and I had to learn to engage my belly. Despite that, I still tried to attempt my headstands. Like I said, I would manage to get up, but it never really felt GREAT. It wasn’t excruciating (and I borrow that line from another teacher of mine haha), but it never was great. Or right for that matter.
It wasn’t long before I strained my shoulder and soon enough, it gave out on me and I decided to stop forcing it to happen and just accept the fact that it is what it is. My arms are too short for headstands. Har. And so I threw that out the window completely. More »
In the last blog contest hosted by Flow SurfYogaSamba, the power trio Noelle, Monica, and Denise posed a challenge to their readers to share a photo of themselves doing their favorite pose. That got me to think about what my favorite pose is. I do have several that I really like, but when I stop to think of it, my all-time favorite and the one that really makes me feel happy and free is Wild Thing, or Camatkarasana
Yoga Journal describes or defines Wild Thing as this: the ecstatic unfolding of the enraptured heart :)
I have learned many poses and conquered many frenemy poses since I started my practice, such as hanumanasana, eka pada urdvha dhanurasana or one legged wheel pose, and even nataranjasana, or dancer pose, but despite those being my current “flavor of the month” when it comes to yoga photos, it is Wild Thing that I still love very much. More »
Trying to ask for help (and accepting this support) from my teachers in inversions and various poses in yoga class used to be very hard for me. I used to be so very afraid of it. Why? Well, for one you have to let go of your inhibitions and insecurities. It wasn’t really falling I was afraid of, as I wrote before, but the fact that I might hurt the teacher inadvertently. Over time, I learned to let that go.
Partner yoga, however, is a totally different story!!!
I never really minded being the one lifting people, supporting people, or being the base in a partner exercise . Not only do I feel like I’m hurting or squashing the person underneath me, I feel like the whole world is watching me via those extra large screens hanging on a flat screen mount. Or even worse: like those football stadium LED screens! Egaaad! I can imagine people saying stuff like what a fat girl, poor person underneath her! and so on and so forth.
This weekend, however, I learned to let it be. Sure, there’s still a little hesitation (I can’t help it…I’m physically ginormous, right???), but at least now I try.
Ever wonder why it’s called upward facing dog and downward facing dog? Well, let Bubba and Joe show you why…
These are old pictures, but they’re too cute not to share on this blog