Up Dog

Today I visited and participated in a Satyananda style class led by the director of Yoga Directions in Taree, Peppa.  The dreads-coifed Peppa is something of a local household word – that is, if the conversations in your home run to yoga.

The 15 or so attendees in this morning’s session were all females, ranging in age from upper 20’s to upper 60’s. We did a variety of yoga practices: asanas, pranayama, and meditation, and the mood that Peppa instilled was “chill”.

When I was a strict Iyenar-ite, I snubbed my nose at what I deemed the soft yoga  styles – the sort of methods which set out few physical challenges for me.

Older and wiser now (or, at least I like to think I am), I see plenty of challenge in being able to stop, relax, and breathe. These three acts reflect the practices of meditation, pratyahara, and pranayama.

Instead of pushing myself to attain the quintessential poses, I’m paring back asanas, deconstructing them, if you will, to find the essence of them – the place where I am strong, stable, and, most importantly, comfortable in each posture.

My early days of yoga were in the No Pain, No Gain era, but now I’m trying to arrive at what Judith Lasater calls No Pain, No Pain.

Did I like the Satyananda class? Yes, I did. I enjoyed being in the hands of a veteran. I felt subtle energies moving within me as I practiced quietly and calmly. And, I made a valuable connection with a colleague who has kindly agreed to promote the sales of our YogaAnywhere cards.