Class Twenty

There are fewer people in class as we approach the end of the month long study. And a few new faces have shown up for the beginning of their month.

All month classes have started on time, if not early. Prashant is often getting us to “settle” at two minutes before 7 AM. So today, when there wasn’t a teacher in the room at the appointed start time, it was unusual. Abijata entered about a minute later and got us started. She taught the class, picking up the theme from Wednesday’s class, opening the groins, for the first half an hour. Then Geeta entered and there was that same back and forth…sometime Abi teaching, sometimes Geeta teaching, sometimes Geeta teaching through Abi, sometimes Geeta lecturing. The mic seemed to be alternately working and not working or not on the person speaking. At one point I was on the street side and when there was no mic I barely heard anything at all. After one of Geeta’s lectures, I moved up towards the stage for a better opportunity to hear.

Compared to Wednesday, it was less chaotic, less tyrannical, and at one point, there was a wee bit of self deprecating humor from Geeta. There was a point where she asked some one “Do you speak English?” and later used the word “stupid” but the rest of the words were unintelligible when addressing some issue with a certain person (not me!).

Once we did some asana to open the groins, it was time to settle down for pranayama. It is pranayama week, after all. It seemed like it might be impossible to be calm and go inward after all the shouting of instructions and mental gymnastics of trying to figure out who to listen to and what they were saying. The prep work and the pranayama set up resulted in a pleasant experience. Abi talked about softening the bones, the flesh and in particular, the skin, specifically of the buttocks and to “decentralized”. The idea of spreading the breath without tightening the skin and without centralizing the body was the focus of the pranayama. To help this decentralization the spine was on a rolled up blanket. Knees bent and feet wide allowed access to smooth and spread the buttock flesh from the sacrum. When straightening the legs, the feet ended up just a bit wider than the mat, heels on the floor. At first it felt a bit awkward by something let go or adjusted and I was a happy yogi throughout the rest of the class.

The sequence went something like this:

Adho Mukha Virasana


Full arm balance

Trikonasana (cut the juncture of the front leg buttock and thigh forward, stabilize the outer thigh of the back leg and roll open)

Parsvakonasana (arm in front of front leg and push it on the leg to open groin)

Prasarita padottanasana

Sirsasana (twice) – upa vista, baddhakonasana konasana, parviakapada

Baddhakonasana (knees DOWN, pump knees down)

Supta baddhakonasana (rolled blanket under sacrum) hold ankles

Baddhakonasana with feet to the wall

Sirsasana – upa vista, baddhakonasana konasana

Salamba Sarvangasana, supta konasana, Sarvangasana cycling through baddhakonasana, upa vista, eka pada and then using a sort of janusirsasana leg position and straightening the leg from there into parsvakonasana eka pada

Supported savasanaa with a Rolled blanket under entire spine (sacrum to head), legs so wide the feet are off the edges of the mat. Pranayama here for some time.


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