Friday, June 4, 2010
Ashtanga Led 2 Class
I went for my first Ashtanga Led 2 (Intermediate series) class on Wednesday. The class starts and ends the same as the first series class but with different poses in the middle. For our first class, Azmi had chosen seven poses from the Intermediate Series which were done after Marichyasana D. He told us that after the 2nd class, he will be cutting out a pose from the primary series and adding another pose from the intermediate series.
The poses we did from the second series were Pasasana, Krounchasana, Shalabhasana A , Shalabhasana B, Bhekasana, Dhanurasana, Parshva Dhanurasana and Ushtrasana. I have done these poses before in the Hatha classes but poses which require me to lie on my stomach have always been not easy for me as I have a tight back and my hips tend to lift off the floor.
The poses in the Intermediate Series composed of more backbend poses and inversions. As the series is also known as Nadi Shodhana which means channel cleansing, the poses help to purifies, opens and clears the energy pathways through our bodies.
Because we spend so much time hunched over the computer, most of us find it difficult to do backbends as our body will tend to resist this unfamiliar territory. Backbends helps to open the heart and chest and strengthens the back and abdominal muscles while inversions are strengthening poses as the shoulders, back, abdomen and legs have to work especially hard to work against gravity from the opposite direction and being upside down also helps to stimulate blood circulation.
I am taking the poses one at a time and hope to see my own progress in them as I learn to open my heart more in the backbend poses. I found this interesting article about The Compassionate Back Bends at Yoga Journal website where the writer wrote about how we should develop a different approach to our practice to find joy in opening the front of our bodies.
I would also like to share this website where a very good article about backbends is uploaded. It explores about backbends and the spine and provide some principles specific to backbends.