Alignment and Injuries, Ashtanga Adaptability, Ask The APP, Ask the AYP, Social Media, Uncategorized, Yoga Sutras
Ask the AYP: Cultivating a Home Yoga Practice
This comment came through on the AYP this week. I have very little trouble getting up. Trouble begins when I hit my mat. I find it very difficult to keep myself going in my home practice. It just doesn’t flow in the same way. Every asana is a struggle and a negotiation with myself to just do one more. Would love any advice anyone has on this particular struggle…. 🙂K. I used to be a home practitioner. I am not going to lie. It is extremely difficult. Like you, I had no problems getting on my mat, but once I got there, my energy and enthusiasm waned. This is what…
Ask the AYP: How can I help my Black students feel comfortable?
This morning, I received a question from a White yoga teacher. It was brought to her attention that Black students don’t always feel comfortable or safe practicing in the predominately White yoga studios of America. She wanted to know how she could help her Black students feel comfortable. If you are concerned about this, keep reading. All my writing is Sutra based. So lets see what the Sutras say. The Yoga Sutras has laid out a path of ethical observances, Yamas, that show us how to treat others. Looked at from the perspective of a White yoga teacher addressing Black students, they would go something like this. Ahimsa-non…
Ashtanga Quotes, Ask The APP, History, Interviews, Teaching Ashtanga, Uncategorized, Yoga Philosophy, Yoga Sutras
Ask the APP: What is Svadyaya/Self Study?
I recently received a question asking for clarification on Svadyaya. Two Schools of Thought on Svadyaya Svadyaya means studying yourself and any work you do on yourself is self study. This definition is most popular among modern students of Yoga. There are three reasons that I believe this to be true. If a student reads the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, without any commentary, one relies on the etymology of svadyaya which is, “self study”. Patanjali does not define Svadyaya in the verses themselves. The second reason it is popular is because it is more PC. In an attempt to not offend students, some modern commentators or Yoga teachers will use this more palatable…
Adventures in Mysore India, Alignment and Injuries, Ashtanga Adaptability, Ashtanga Quotes, Ask The APP, History, Social Media, Teaching Ashtanga, Uncategorized, Yoga Philosophy, Yoga Sutras
Different Yoga Styles: You Got It All Wrong
As a blogger, I receive press releases all the time. I received one yesterday that was really disturbing. It came from a major “yoga lifestyle brand” aka retailer of cute and pricey non essential yoga ish. Don’t get me wrong. I have drawers full of cute non essential yoga ish. I love it. I am just calling a spade a spade. I am not going to name these people but you know them. They dominate Instagram. They sponsor challenges done by the most popular yoga teachers in the world. Some of which are Ashtangis. The press release was disturbing because these people, whether we like it or not, are the…
Alignment and Injuries, Ashtanga Adaptability, Ashtanga Quotes, Ask The APP, Interviews, Reblogs, Social Media, Teaching Ashtanga, Uncategorized, Yoga Philosophy, Yoga Sutras
A Deeper Conversation on Pain In Yoga with Gregor Maehle and Satinder Khalsa
I received a comment on my article, Yogi’s Attitude Towards Pain, that made me realize that I deeper conversation on pain and suffering needed to take place. The comment centered around the difference between suffering and pain and the meaning of the word “duhkha” from the Yoga Sutras. Reader, Satinder Khalsa,wrote “It doesn’t say pain, it says suffering, duhkha, which has not come can be avoided.” I though this was interesting because the verse is always translated as “pain”. I decided to have a chat with Satinder, my Sanskrit teacher Kokila Kaul, and renowned Ashtanga teacher and Author of, Ashtanga Yoga: Practice and Philosophy, Gregor Maehle about Duhkha. …
Adventures in Mysore India, Alignment and Injuries, Ashtanga Adaptability, Ashtanga Quotes, Ask The APP, Social Media, Teaching Ashtanga, Uncategorized, Videos, Yoga Philosophy, Yoga Sutras
How To Prevent Ashtanga Crazy Making
There is a saying, “knowledge is power”. It is usually seen as a positive statement. However, is all power good? Are all people who have power doing good things for the world and for themselves? Are all people who have knowledge doing good things for the world and for themselves? Yoga is extremely powerful. Even without a full understanding of the practice, people see amazing results. If the yoga is not tempered by discernment and the other 7 limbs of yoga, this powerful practice can be dangerous. I recently wrote an article about learning yoga from the internet. The internet is great. The internet is not the problem. Yoga books and…
Ashtanga Adaptability, Ask The APP, History, Teaching Ashtanga, Uncategorized, Videos, Yoga Philosophy, Yoga Sutras
Yoga Sutras for Modern Day Life: Is Yoga Religious?
Before we continue with the commentary on the Sutras,Yoga Sutras for Modern Day Life, it is time to define Isvara. Isvara is much debated term in the yoga world. It is the word that most people use to prove that yoga is indeed religious. Isvara, has been translated by some to mean God. However this is not the dominate belief of Yoga scholars around the world as some would have you believe. This belief originated from religious people. The dominate belief is that yoga is outside of religion. Yoga does not conflict with any religious beliefs or even atheism. Yoga is the science of self realization which is something that all…
Ask the APP: Why Practice Ashtanga 6 Days a Week?
Question: I’d love to hear some thoughts on why we do a 6-day/week practice, when it started, who started it, etc. My husband is not a yoga practitioner and he can’t understand why practice can’t just be 4 days a week. Are we all addicted to our practice? Tradition I get it. In this day and time, saying something is tradition is not enough for many. It is understandable because in mankind’s history, many evil and unkind acts have been perpetuated in the name of tradition. From what I understand, this was how the practice was taught to Pattabhi Jois and he transmitted it this way to his students. The…
Ask the APP: Ashtanga For All Bodies
“Old man, stiff man, weak man, sick man, they can all take practice but only a lazy man can’t take practice.” Sri K Pattabhi Jois There was an inquiry on the APP regarding Ashtanga and being overweight. Anyone can practice Ashtanga. Ashtanga is best learned using the Mysore style method which is learning the practice pose by pose from a teacher who has a firm and consistent practice. When learned this way, the teacher will teach you how to approximate ie get as close to the full version of the pose as safely as possible. The key here is finding a teacher who understands your body and knows how to…
Alignment and Injuries, Ashtanga Adaptability, Ask The APP, History, Teaching Ashtanga, Uncategorized, Yoga Sutras
What You Need To Know About Mysore Style Ashtanga
You are taught the poses by a teacher! The most common misconception about Mysore style Ashtanga is that you are not taught the poses or that you have to know them before you get there.The teacher teaches you the poses! If you enter a Mysore class for the first time and the teacher just hands you a sheet of paper and walks off, roll up your mat and leave. They don’t know what they are doing. Many descriptions of Mysore style ashtanga say “self led” or “self practice”. This is because you are given a set of poses and as you continue to come, you memorize them and flow through them while…