Adventures in Mysore India,  Ashtanga Adaptability,  Uncategorized

A.P.P Goes To Mysore: New Beginnings, New Start Times, New Jokes

Diwali brings new auspicious beginnings and that is definitely the case for me.  I don’t know if I found my stride, got over myself, or what, but the energy has shifted and I feel like myself again.  We went to Sharath’s farm for Diwali and he and has family sang for us. He also gave us a tour of the farm. He touched my heart when he said that he wanted to use the farm as a way to have a deeper connection with his students.

At the end of last month, I got Pasasana from Sharath. Who knows how long I will be there or if I will get anything else from him so I tried not to get too excited LOL.  See, I have not quite figured out his formula for giving out poses. It is not a simple case of mastery of the previous poses. There are people all around me with the most gorgeous practices who have not been given that many poses.  Don’t quote me on this, I have only been here for a month, but I believe that the length of time that a student has been studying with him is one of the biggest factors. It seems  that, people who have made multiple trips, get poses faster and at a more steady rate.  It seems that there is a period of time where he is getting to know us as students and movement forward is slow during this period. If my opinion, and that is all it is, my opinion, changes on this, I will let you know.

P.S. shortly after releasing this post, this hypothesis on poses was blown out the water by a message from a dear friend LOL. I love this blog. I learn so much!!!!

My start times have changed. I am now doing both my led classes at 4:30AM which means that I have to wake up at 2:45AM and be out the house no later then 3:15AM. Whenever I start to think, WTF, I think about how Sharath gets up between 1AM and 1:30AM to do his practice so he can teach us. He says that he only sleeps around 4 1/2 hours a night and teaches 8 hours a day. On top of that, he has two kids, a wife and a Yoga school to run.

My Mysore times are 6AM which means I get up at 4:45AM and get out the house by 5:15AM, which compared to the Led classes, feels like sleeping in.

There are also new students this month. It is both exciting and strange.  The students, who share your start times, start to feel like family. It feels strange for their faces to be gone and others to replace them.

Last month, Sharath joked about my height. Today, he picked up my registration card, called me by name, and started to scold me because my card was expired and I was not supposed to be there.  At first, I thought he was serious so I was like,”no, it says November 30th.” He said again, “No, your card expired. Your last day was last month.” I noticed he had the date covered with his thumb and I again desperately explained how I was here for two months. Then he laughed and said, “just joking.”

Just before that, we did catching and he said, “oh, you make me fall!” and laughed. My legs are still not straight enough. I find it easier to catch from the air but that option has not been offered to me. I have to walk in and then they have to pick my hands off the floor and bring them in.  For me, it is easier to leave out the middle man and go straight to the ankles.


Shanna Small has been practicing Ashtanga Yoga and studying the Yoga Sutras since 2001. She has studied in Mysore with Sharath Jois and is the Director of AYS Charlotte, a school for traditional Ashtanga in Charlotte NC. She has written for Yoga International and the Ashtanga Dispatch. Go here for more information on AYS Charlotte. For information on workshops, please e-mail [email protected]