Archive for June, 2014


June 30, 2014

We have had David Garrigues visit the sticks again, though I didn’t do any of it, my arm isn’t ready for 10 minute Chaturanga. I did go to watch the end of the Mysore class on moon day Friday and was delighted to run in to fellow blogger Grimmly, after 6 years of commenting chatting via the blogosphere.

The benefit of getting in that mid week practice was today’s relaxed, strong, bendy practice, more regular heat and help make such a difference. Two DD squashings in the Surya’s, Trikonasana A & B, Louise opens that left shoulder up and the rest of it seems to flow from there, PPC assist opens the shoulder the other way, the physiotherapist certainly can’t say my shoulders not getting enough exercise.

All the seated binds are back now, it seemed to be a day of getting squashed, Paschimottanasana and then Louise had me repeat Baddha Konasana to squash me flat. Makes me wonder if they have an adjustment theme of the day!

Pasasana now the first side fingers overlap but can’t quite dock, surprisingly the second side is bound, despite it in theory being the bad side for my shoulder. Another super a Bhekasana assist.

Urdva Dhanurasana is coming, my hands are not sliding quite so much now, just getting off the ground was hard enough, but I’ve gained more strength and on number 4 I managed an almost proper straight armed one. Having been dropback assisted in the week I could feel how much easier it was today, more rainbow than table.


Off for some Ashtanga tourism to Lisbon tomorrow, my first trip in a year, Isa kindly invited me to do Dena’s workshop on Saturday, so I’m off to practice at Casa Vinyasa for a few days before Dena comes, heat and help a few days in a row. I met Isa in Mysore when she was assisting Sharath, those wonderful Supta K assists, it will be nice to practice with her again in her own Shala.


A space in the Oven

June 25, 2014


The Shala seems to be getting busier than ever, Sunday I got the last spot in the opposite corner to where I usually like to be, the one mat wide zone with walls front and back. The yellow wall in front has a strange hypnotic effect resulting in crappy unassisted UHP balances. It seemed slightly cooler at ground level for seated, Supta K on my own and again managed the Dwi Pada exit into Titibhasana , alas my arm still doesn’t yet have the strength or range to complete the exit via Bhkasana. .

Pasasana is binding again at last despite the late night World Cup chocolate diet. A cooling spray as I was setting up for Salabhasana, my neighbour was watering for Garbha, missed spraying her leg and got me in the face 🙂

Stamina is still lacking, I’m wrecked by closing, backbends remain a work in progress. Still a strong practice again.

I decided to get in a midweek practice today, I’ve not done that in a while. Again luckily bagged the last spot, this time in front of the teachers station, no hiding place! But lots more help, Trikonasana B, then PPC and UHP, my balance is still crap for some reason lately, so I was glad when Emma came to the rescue. It was a sauna in there, there was a waterfall running off my elbow in Ardha Badha balance.

Seated help in Tiriang Mukha, Mari A and H had me bound in Supta K before I had chance to experiment, at least they all seem to find it easy to put me in it and Dwi Pada exit again, soooo much fun being able to do that again.

That chalk ball earns it’s corn on days like this, not only for backbends but it helps my hands keep a hold in Bhekasana, H assists that differently to Louise, she seems to jam my hands on the feet, but H is more in to lifting the chest up as I struggle to hold on.

Rubbish UD’s, I just had no energy left and no playing around with hang backs, Louise came straight over, the twisting right habit seems to be back from the prodding of my hips, but great to get that assistance.

Another good practice, but much more tiring, the heat is great at helping opening the body, but also saps the energy more quickly it seems.

Great to have breakfast with Susan after, guarding our breakfast as we sat outside, an ashtangi was mugged by a seagull for his croissant a couple of days ago!

No sleep, like being in Mysore

June 16, 2014

With the late night in to early morning World Cup matches, getting up to go to AYL felt like being in Mysore, being woken by the alarm after nowhere near enough sleep, dragging myself to the station, no sleep on the train, opening the Shala door and being hit by the heat.

The Shala was quieter this week, a combination probably of Father’s Day and the late night England V Italy World Cup match. Though I noticed the Italian yogis were up early, they probably hadn’t been to bed after their win!

More help in standing this week, Trikonasana and the PPC stretch, and UHP. Seated has got where it’s going for now until I can get the strength back, I can bind Mari D on my own now, Supta K was a free pass as I felt Louise squashing me in Kurmasana and knotting both ends. It’s the energy as well as the strength that is still the problem, doing Vinyasas again gives me more flow, but by Mari C I’m knackered.

I think the late night snacking is having a detrimental effect on Pasasana, the fingers touch, but it’s not quite as joined up as it was before the football started! Bhekasana was good again. Closing, umm, having run out of steam and the slippery state of my mat Urdva Dhanurasana was dire, I managed to get up after a couple with my hands jammed against the wall. I was pretty glad when Emma came over as I started to hang back, I just didn’t have the energy left to control the drop on my own, but being assisted does give me a deeper bend which should help in the long run. Sirsasana up again without endangering myself or those in the vicinity.

Fracture clinic today for my post op check up, the non dissolving stitches have settled down, the range of motion is much better, but the lack of strength is concerning them, I thought I would be discharged today, but nope they want me to return in a few months time. So almost two years later I will still be a patient.

Not all twists are meant to be.

June 9, 2014

Friday at the local Shala, little April subbing for C, some nice and different assists, PPA rotation outwards of the thighs and some nice dropbacks. The Shala somehow feels quieter and calmer when April teaches.

Flowers for charity at Granary Square

I managed to fit in an extra Shala practice with Michaela at shiny HQ on Saturday, standing is pretty much back, just a lack of strength to hold the second side of UHP. Seated everything bound, but the exits from Bhuja and Supta K via Bakasana are nowhere near, the shoulder is gradually recovering movement, but there is a long way to go with strength. The vinyasas run out of steam and it all starts to ache. A nice assist in Bhekasana and in UD, holding the assistants ankles to push up.

Closing was interesting, I’ve started to be able to get up in to Sirsasana and although it took two attempts I was up and balanced when M came over and said I may be up, but I was extremely twisted, as I was compensating for the left shoulder. I felt straight, she had me come down, but then I just couldn’t get back up again, so I got a private Sirsasana lesson, she said I’ve got the flexibility back but need to go up straight.

Sunny Sunday morning

A stupid o’clock replacement bus on Sunday to AYL, which had to take a diversion and made me late getting in the door, only by 10 minutes, but by then the Shala was full, so I started in the Finishing room, 2nd in line for “one more”. By the time my one more came at Prasarita PB there was even a queue of people waiting to start in the Finishing Room!

The volume of people made it an oven, so it actually ended up being a good practice despite having to move rooms. I like to stay put once I’ve started, though I notice (bad drishte!) that a lot of people will up and move if they perceive a better spot becoming free. I ended up in the corner by the window, which is pretty much where I like to be anyway.

A nice Paschimottanasana squashing, easy Marichyasana binds, getting in to them in that heat is much easier, but holding them with every orifice pouring sweat is another matter. They must be looking ok, Louise watched me do Mari D, but as soon as she saw me bind she departed. She was back for Supta K, I was just starting to wriggle in on my own when I felt my back being flattened, I just let her expertly knot me up, then lift my feet for the exit, I found I could do Titibhasana, but moving to Bakasana is too much. No water needed for Gharba.

My bit of second is pretty much back to where it was, another lovely assist from Louise in Bhekasana lifting my chest up. Time for closing, UD is beginning to happen, especially if it’s preceded by Suzanne’s Feldenkreis “Hand standing” exercise which helps ground the hand before I try and push up. My hand still ends up too far back. Dropbacks with Tom, he supports this so much, but doing the movement is nice, even if it’s not the satisfaction of doing it myself.

Unlike Saturday we exited the Shala to a warm sunny morning, the clouds reflected in the building.


June 1, 2014

Practice is progressing, Mondays AYL was followed by a compulsory interview with the DWP on Tuesday, what a waste of time that was, I’m free of them in 4 weeks time, but also then free of any income unless a miracle occurs and a job comes along.

A tortuous two hour replacement bus ride to practice this morning, arrived at the right time, as 15 minutes later it was full. Help in the usual places, a physio replacement PPC stretching out of the shoulder. A nice squash in Paschimottanasana and a total knotting in Supta K, that’s no problem at all now 🙂

Two hours to get here

I’m back to being able to jump back, though not forward, but replacing the stepping does give it more flow, but it is sapping my energy as well, resulting in Chaturanga splat after Bhuja.

Pasasana is now so frustratingly close, fingers overlapping but the left arm and hand just haven’t got the stretch or strength to join it all up. Sweat sodden hands and feet did for Bhekasana, just couldn’t hold on.

Urdva Dhanurasana I was spent, just couldn’t push up, my hands kept sliding despite my chalk ball, I managed some with my hands jammed against the skirting board, before E came along to do three nice assisted dropbacks, she did 80% of the work.

Closing is all back now, Sirsasana was the last brick in the wall, I can’t stay up long, but at least I can get up without endangering anyone nearby. A longer than intended Savasana, I needed a rest.

It felt like a tiring slog, especially after Bhuja, although I managed everything, it’s not pretty, it’s still clunky with movements to help my left arm get where it needs to go.
So I was surprised when Louise said afterwards how good it all looked again now and then said if I can’t find a job soon I should go and teach yoga. Think that’s more wishful thinking than Parampara.