March 2013

The Ups and Downs of Urdhva Dhanuasana

The Ups and Downs of Urdhva Dhanuasana

People keep asking me whether I can do everything I used to be able to do before I had my double hip replacement. What a hard question!
Here’s a shot of me in 1990 doing a backbend, pre-hip arthritis.
 
And, here I am 22 years later teaching my bionic hips how to extend.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Those of you out there with your perfecto-meters will note that as a 68-year old, my shoulders are stiffish, but, hey, I used to be overly flexible.
It’s a funny thing. […]

Here Today, Maybe Not Tomorrow

Here Today, Maybe Not Tomorrow

I’m getting far too good at stopping and smelling the roses. That’s the price I pay to be semi-retired, living in the country. What does semi mean anyway?
I took a small detour on my way to yoga practice this morning to admire and photograph the heavy mists hanging all around our property.

And then, I found myself attracted to the tibouchina that was just bloomin’ its heart out.

Of course, the brugmansia stopped me in my tracks, too.

Finally, just when I thought I was going to get into the Yoga Shed, the butcher bird caught my attention. […]

Know Any Everyday Heroes?

Source: confessionsofapropjunkie.com via Lauren on Pinterest

 
Sometimes I hear about a person in my circle of friends and acquaintances who is doing it hard and doing it quietly and uncomplainingly. It crosses my mind that these people are really everyday heroes, in their own sphere.
We don’t often recognise these stalwarts for their contributions because we think of heroes as being those who lead forces in battle, tie themselves to trees in old-growth forests, or save lives. I’ll never forget the faces pictured on the front page of the Sydney Morning Herald after the Port Arthur massacre. […]

Best Ways of Cultivating Concentration

Source: flickr.com via Jessica on Pinterest

 
Yesterday I wrote about how difficult I find it, at times, to pay attention. I’m finding the practice of mindfulness meditation gradually helping me improve my concentration.
Another aid for focussing the mind is the practice of pranayama – attention to the breath. Today I wanted to link back to Patanjali and his Sutra regarding pranayama. […]

Tripping Over Myself

Source: fibromodem.com via FibroModem on Pinterest

 
Do you have any preferred ways that you use to escape from work or problems in your life?
One simple device I use is to take frequent breaks to have cups of tea or coffee or snacks. I try to eat and drink in wholesome way so I don’t really abuse the above strategy. […]

Hips Are All the Rage

Hips Are All the Rage

Is there an epidemic of hip replacements going on? I know of three yoginis who will have the surgery done within a month time frame – mid-March to mid-April. To be fair, I also know women who haven’t done yoga who, for various reasons, had to have replacements.
If you’ve been following this blog, you know my story of bi-lateral surgery, performed more than 3 years ago. […]

How Did I Get Here?

How Did I Get Here?

 
I had some time this morning – quite a lot of it, actually – to wander around Bondi Junction, my old stomping grounds. Here’s a photo of the entrance to the Australian School of Yoga on Oxford Street.
I was mentally winding back the clock  to 1979 when I had my first experience of Iyengar Yoga taught by this man:

 
It’s fair to say that Martyn Jackson, Iyengar Yoga and the time I spent at the Australian School of Yoga changed the course of my life. […]

Medical Merry-Go-Round

Medical Merry-Go-Round

Oh my! My head is spinning!
I left paradisiac Mitchells Island at 9 am to drive south as I was scheduled for root canal therapy in Sydney in the early afternoon. The dental specialist that performed the procedure, an endondontist, did the 75 minute treatment while I was looking up at the ceiling watching Mr. Bean videos, hearing easy- listening tracks on the stereo, and, at the same time, trying to do mindfulness meditation. […]

How Do You Say 'Alert and Relaxed' in Sanskrit?

Source: palmstone.com via Jennifer on Pinterest

 
Do you shut down in yoga class when your teacher uses Sanskrit words and concepts? Or, are you the opposite? You relish the opportunity to extend your learning about yoga, even to the point of assimilating an unfamiliar language.
Probably you stand in the middle; you don’t mind a smattering of the Sanskrit but not so much it keeps you in your head. […]

A Lover's Quarrel with Myself

Source: hautefavesdeux.tumblr.com via sally ann on Pinterest

 
Do you get into internal dialogues where one part of you catches another aspect of yourself being foolish, judgmental, absent-minded, mean-spirited…. You get the idea. Insert any negative adjective you might think of into the description.
Round and round you go, trying to fight your way out of disempowering self-talk, but all you end up doing is digging in yourself into deeper hole.
Then, with any luck, some distraction comes along and the interruption is enough to wake you up to the moment. […]