Yoga. Hooray!

October 14, 2008 at 2:53 pm | Posted in yoga | Leave a comment
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Note: I have no idea why the fonts are so messed up on this post!

 

A good friend of mine recently shared pictures of her doing Bikram yoga poses at 39 weeks pregnant.  She looked absolutely gorgeous – strong and poised.  (As she acknowledged, there are varying degrees of skepticism about doing any sort of heated yoga while pregnant.  Her incredible pictures mirrored my own take on it:  if it makes you feel good, as long as you’re careful, it is good for the baby.  My yoga teacher, Claire, at Baptiste – a former pediatric E.R. nurse – encouraged me with the caveats that I managed my pulse and temperature, positioned myself by the door to get a sliver of fresh air, and modified my poses.  So I did heated Baptiste yoga through 37 weeks, and while it might not have translated so much into a calm labor, it did keep me relaxed and ache-free up until the end of my actual pregnancy – no sciatica or lower back pain.)  Anyway, my friend had her baby boy yesterday, and after seeing those pictures I was inspired enough to finally get myself back on the mat this morning for the first time in at least four months (but it could very well be more – yikes!) 

I went to a Forrest Yoga class at Back Bay yoga at 6:15 a.m.  I had done Forrest Yoga just once before, in Los Angeles, when I was a real yoga junkie.  I remembered it as being quite centered on strengthening the core and also in a heated room.  The first half of class this morning was pretty sedentary – lots of seated and lying poses (albeit with lots of core work), which I’m not used to after years of a vigorous vinyasa practice.  I wasn’t sure I liked it.  But after a series of arm balances (which I love, and which you don’t get much of in a Baptiste class), I was feeling warm, and only then did we move into sun salutations, followed by deep hip openers.  I have been feeling that resonance in my hips all day, reminding me both that it’s been a habitually problematic area, but also a sort of pat-on-the-back that I did manage to get up and do something productive this morning.  There’s also an early-morning ashtanga class at Back Bay, but as I think I’ve mentioned before, I’m too out of focus, yoga-wise, to dive off the very deep end back into a Mysore practice, where there’s no one to lead me through the practice but myself. 

In the end, though, Mysore may be my only weekday option (or, to be honest, weekly option: getting to a Baptiste class in Cambridge on a weekend just takes too big a time-chunk out of my precious non-working hours…).  Unfortunately, though the Back Bay website had the Forrest class lasting for just an hour, in reality it runs until 7:30, which just makes our morning before-work routine too tricky.  I’ll have to sneak out the back if I continue to go, which I know from experience is kind of a bummer for the teacher (you think: Did they hate it? Are they bored? Are they hurt?)  Mysore starts at 6 a.m. and goes for as long as you want it to:  I actually could race through an abbreviated first series and still be home by 7:15.  So we shall see – but in any event, I hope this is the beginning of a new commitment.  A re-commitment, in fact, to something that has been an important and I think absolutely essential part of my balance.

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