Thursday, April 24, 2003

I did make it to practice today after all. We got done in the OR about 4:00 so I got to class in time to stretch a bit. That makes all the difference for me, especially after standing in the OR all the afternoon.

Practice was reasonably good. Not quite as satisfying as yesterday's but still OK. I was a little distracted though. Not by others, by myself actually. I stunk! I forgot to put on deodorant this morning, so I could 'detect' myself pretty easily by the time I was stretching out before class. Hopefully I wasn't so noticible that I was bothersome to the yoginis on each side of me.

Tonight was a mostly yogini class. I think there were only three guys out of a class of about 20 people. I have this theory about class gender ratios. If the class is usually led by a person who is fairly good looking, the class will consist mostly of students of the opposite gender from the teacher,

One good thing about classes that are smaller than the morning mysore classes: the walls aren't as slippery. I've been trying to work a bit on coming up from back bends. When I'm in a spot where the end of my mat faces the wall, I've been trying to work my way up the wall for the last two or three backbends. In mysore class, I usually have to give up on that because the walls are so wet from condensed sweat that I can't put any pressure against them without my hands sliding out. Not real confidence building.

That whole shift of the body weight away from the hands/arms and out over the feet is alien to me. I just can't figure out what it is that I am doing and what is is that I need to be doing instead. I find it hard to analyze when I'm upside down. I think mainly what I am doing is fearing but there's a component of inflexibility (physical) too. My wife finds backbending so easy that she is unable to comprehend where hackers like me are coming from. "You have all your weight over your hands." she tells me. "You'll never be able to stand up like that. Shift the weight into your feet. Push your head closer to your butt." Oh. I see. I'll get right on that. Just as soon as you tell me HOW!!!! I am progressing though. I've restarted my shower routine of bending back as far as I can a few times. My wife says I should be able to see the floor before I try to actually drop back. So far, the best that I can do in the shower is to see the 13th shower tile from the top. There's a total of 16, so I've still got about a foot to go before the floor even comes into peripheral view. I'm not in such a hurry to be able to drop back and to stand up that I'm willing to incur much injury risk. I can't afford not to work. So, fearing plays a role for me every day. One good thing about taking up yoga at this stage of life (peri-geezerhood) is that it's not hard to be humble.

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