This third week of practicing the past poses has been a journey in itself. It's forced me to remember what I've done in the past and theoretically should remember. Well, that is not necessarily the case. Once again, this week required some refreshing homework!
I recently downloaded the Songza app for my phone and decided to try it out during my practice. Maybe having music is that special touch I need for a home practice. It just made it that much better!
I had planned on a particular practice time but for some bazaar reason I had a stomach ache. I can't remember the last time I had a stomach ache! Maybe when I was pregnant back in 2011?!? Regardless, I sought out a stomach relieving pose first and found just what I was looking for.
Knees to Chest Pose (Apasana)
Not in my original practice from 12 years ago, but this pose has been in my life for many more years than that. I only recently knew that pose was helpful for stomach aches because it was primarily used, by me, for a low back stretch.
It did what it was suppose to do and I got relief. Now on to the three poses of the day...
Shooting Arrow (Akarna Dhanura Asana)
My recollection of this pose was using the arms as a bow and arrow. What I wrote in my journal does speak to the arms doing some form of work in a standing "mountain" pose but I'd be darned if I could find any information online about this pose that represented what I remembered.
Alas, I just went with this rendition and was happy for it. It too was active in the belly so I can't complain. And, I really noticed the imbalance of my hamstring flexibility from side to side.
"I began in the mountain pose with five diaphragmatic breaths. I continued into the pose feeling progressively warmer as I went on. My shoulders were stiff and cracked when I did the arm movements (on both left and right sides). Since I am getting used to the move, I forgot to bend at the knee initially, but I corrected it on the other side. My breathing felt controlled during the movement."
Tiger Pose (Vyaghrasana)
This pose has been in my repertoire for the last year or so. Now, in this week's practice I did not include a roar or growl as my son wasn't present! We've been doing this pose in parent and tot yoga class and it can be great fun for the kids. Tonight however, it was a great silent hip opener.
"In this position, I had trouble synchronizing my breath with the movement. I found that exhaling on the knee movement forward was difficult because it was the first part of the movement. On most of the other poses, we start the movement by inhaling. I will need to concentrate on my breathing."
Row Your Boat - Boat Pose (Navasana)
This pose too has made many appearances in parent and tot yoga. Instead of counting breaths, we sing "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" multiple times. It was kinda refreshing to focus on my breath and progress in the pose. I experimented with the straight leg progression with some success. In the moment, it reminded me of double leg ballet leg from my synchronized swimming days - challenging but so worth the sweat and tears! My goal is to continue to challenge myself in this pose.
"It took me some time to be focused in the starting position because I needed to focus on sitting upright. As I continued, I felt that my lower back and hamstrings were tight in the both the forward and opposite direction movement. The movement felt choppy because of the muscle stiffness."
Well, three more poses re-done and how interesting my body has changed over 12 years. One more week of my journal from May 2001.
Continuing to explore,
Aspiring Yoga Teacher
I've practiced yoga since I was a pre-teen and have always found it to keep me centered. I will be a teacher one day and this is my journey to discover teaching and practice.