Brock and Krista came to town for a three day yoga workshop. Learned a ton. Highly recommend checking out their classes. It will be different than anything else you have done yoga-wise. They have amazing methods for teaching inversions, arm balances and handstand variations. These were easily some of the most challenging yoga asana classes I’ve ever done. Some random things I’ve come away with from the weekend:
- Fear is by far the biggest limiter to doing a handstand or inversions of any kind.
- Raw strength is less important than core stability and muscle awareness.
- Pressure through the fingers (hasta bandha) is useful for maintaining balance in handstand and other arm balances.
- Have fun AT ALL COSTS 🙂
- Staying hydrated – before class not just during – is super important during intensive weekend trainings.
- Learn to fall and be ok with it….if you are going to do handstands, you are going to fall!
- Let your hips lead the way when jumping forward from downdog to forward fold.
- For me, tight hamstrings are a limiter when it comes to moving into certain poses. Need to work on that.
- Have fun with transitions into and out of poses…try new ways to get into and come out of poses.
Have another session with them tomorrow…will add any other tid bits to the list after that.
[updates after our final sessions]
A few more thoughts after a final 2.5 hour practice:
- Proper fuel and hydration are so important. I did a 90 minute vinyasa practice prior to the 2.5 hour intensive sessions with Brock and Krista – and sweated through several yogi-toes towles and several changes of clothes. Having proper hydration is critical. I am using Amino Vital right now, with nuun tablets in a separate water bottle and a PowerGel between classes. In retrospect I should have drank more water last night or in the middle of the night to prepare. Oh well.
- Building strength around an injury can help an injury heal.
- Play around with variations – e.g. handstand with one hand on a block, arm balances with one hand turned out, etc. keep it interesting.
- Some might say doing so many inversions is not part of the traditional practice of yoga – but Iyengar, Pattabhi Jois and others had incredible practices and frequently went upside down.
- Some teachers might not be cool with you doing things (like jumping int handstands from downdog) outside of the norm – don’t worry about that – if you want to do interesting variations – do it and find a teacher that will support you.
- Again…I realized that tight hamstrings can be a limiter in getting my body into certain poses. Find your limiter and work on it (in class and outside of class).
- Interesting transition: go from forearm plank to low-plank using your back muscles! This can also work with a scorpion to low-plank transition.
- Interesting transition: go from headstand to tripod headstand and back by just moving your arms.