41 backbends

Today I turned 41.

I am the healthiest and probably the happiest I have ever been in my entire 41 years of living.

My day will be spent teaching a cycling class this morning, then some sort of yummy lunch, followed by a massage and then dinner out with Curt and friends at our favorite restaurant, Le Bistro Montage.

This week my yoga sequence is backbends. One of the first yoga classes I taught (with my friend Sandra) was a backbends sequence and we named our class: Bringing Your Heart Into Backbends. I really like that so I am going with that name this week as well.

My yoga teacher training lineage goes back to BKS Iyengar. Iyengar believed backbends were important to practice as we age. He lived to 95 and died last year. He also believed that on your birthday you practice one backbend for each year of your life.

So this morning I practiced 41 backbends. This is the first year I have practiced this tradition and plan to continue it through the years.

I had first heard of this tradition last year when Tony Briggs, a yoga teacher in the Bay Area-ish, was turning 70 and … Continue reading

Triangle transformation follow-up

 

Recently I wrote about my Triangle transformation.

Over a year I watched as my Utthita Trikonasana dramatically changed and became healthier for my body.

I talked about how I hyperextend in my knees and I have learned how to stop that in this pose.

Knee hyperextension, which means too much opening at the back of the knee, creates misalignment and bad movement habits that can pave the way for arthritis and more serious knee injuries, according to Yoga Journal

Also according to Yoga Journal, a joint with such laxity is said to be hypermobile, and the knee is particularly vulnerable to this problem.

Being super flexible isn’t always a good thing for the body. When we are overly flexible in our bodies we need to recognize that and work to not go too deep into a pose and hurt ourselves.

I hyperextend in both my knees and elbows. I am also super flexible in my lower back, which means I have to be extra careful with my backbends and make sure they are coming out of my upper thoracic spine and not my lumbar.

When I wrote the post about my Triangle transformation, one of … Continue reading

Yoga anatomy

Last night in yoga teacher training class we learned about bones, muscles, joints, connective tissue, etc.

It was fascinating and I learned so much.

It’s A LOT of information. But Baxter broke it down and made it easy to learn (and hopefully remember).

We had Pat, our skeleton, along with two huge diagrams on the muscles and skeleton.

We also had us. Baxter used markers to draw on feet and legs to show us where muscles and bones are placed. We also would feel around our own bones and bodies and feel things move or where something is placed.

I learn best when what I am learning is visual and I can also read about it. The dual learning works best for me. However others learn, all aspects are being used in class and in the readings we are assigned (lots of pictures in our books).

There are so many cool things I learned and I am still struggling with what I am going to share.

Did you know that we have 206 bones in our body? And 52 bones in our feet? The bones in our feet make up almost one-fourth of all the bones in our body.

There … Continue reading