Tuesday, August 10, 2010

I was a mess on the mat

Image Compliments of mooseyscountrygarden.com
Last night's class was in the midst of a huge and torrential downpour.  The humidity was amazingly high in the studio.  Our studio has been closed for a week so I enjoyed my week off from practicing and teaching.  For me, Bikram is a practice I will do for the rest of my life.  How can I do that?  The best recipe for me is to not burn out on it and to learn to be very kind to myself in the practice room.

So when presented with a week off, I took it.

Sunday was the first day back, great class.  Teachers don't rush to end right on time for our Sunday morning class, and it's always an exercise in endurance and limitations when even three to four minutes are added to the class!  I worked hard, took class from a teacher I haven't had before.  Then I spent the day weeding and mulching in my garden.  Lovely!

Which brings us to yesterday, Monday.  The studio air was thick, it was raining, and it was a steamy class.  I'm adopting a modification for some lower back pain - so I'm practicing with my feet apart in pranayama and half moon.  Class was difficult for me from the start, and I really struggled during standing balancing poses.  Standing bow should really be called wibble wobble or falling bow or something.  It's such a challenge for me to stay in it.

My balance was off, and by triangle and separate leg forehead to knee, I was exhausted.  I think I even caught myself swearing at the teacher in the floor series - something I haven't done for ages.  The floor series was difficult.  I couldn't even do rabbit - I had to do the serious modification of hands on the floor.

I felt like a mess on the mat, my head was all over the place, I was getting into and out of poses late and early respectively, but I was doing my best.  That much I knew.  I didn't have any juice in the tank.

I'm hoping this means that better classes are around the corner - it always does.

My teaching class last night was just packed with dialogue.  As someone who teaches at a non-dialogue studio, I have always worried about the dialogue slipping.  However I listen to my recording in the car pretty faithfully and last night just spewed it.  It came very naturally.  Dialogue that still needs work: Standing separate stretching pose (this was one of my easiest at training thus I haven't worked it at home at all), bow pose (really???) and rabbit and separate leg forehead to knee with stretching.

None of it is that bad though.  I know what the dialogue points are, it's more a question of order.

Anyway, I was wiped after my class (as opposed to feeling juiced and energetic as I usually do).  So... teaching was going to be a challenge.  Just add dialogue, watch the clock, and the students had a great class.


ellelove7 said...

I know this class was very hard for you... but let me tell you that as a student of the practice, it's almost encouraging to hear of teachers struggling through class as well. Makes me feel that maybe I'm not as novice as I feel at times. :)

anna said...

Teachers do struggle - for sure. Thanks for your comment!

At teacher training... the classes just keep coming at you, fast and furious. It's inevitable that you will have bad classes, and awesome classes (sometimes in the same day.)

It taught me a great equanimity while practicing. The good and the bad are the edges of the range that you call your practice. It's always a moving average, rather than it being about your "best" in the poses.

And, often times a crappy horrible class is right before a great one. We can always hope!