Hello,

I went to class today and was discouraged to find that I was once again losing my balance.  It is so frustrating to be having this problem so late in the game, especially when it didn’t affect me in the beginning.  I guess I can see it two ways.  I can look at it as improvement:  I’m losing my balance because I’m pushing myself harder, finding my edge, and challenging my limits.  This could be causing my postures to be in constant fluctuation; this could make me be having to constantly reassess and scan my body to find balance.  I could also see this problem as regression:  my failure to be focused, be in the moment, and be aware of my body, also a way for me to make excuses to get out of a posture when the going gets tough.

I could also look at it as a combination.  As I start challenging myself more physically it demands more of me mentally.  Pushing the posture harder makes it that more important for me to be totally present in my body, constantly scanning for balance, muscle use, and alignment.  In my last two classes I would like to try and be fully present in my practice, fully aware of my body, and try to be as successful as possible as I finish out my challenge.

In my last class I did something I would never have dreamed of doing 4 weeks ago, and that is I wore a sports bra to class.  As in just a sports bra without a shirt.  First of all, I just want to say that I am really proud of myself for finding the confidence to do this.  I am a pretty modest person, and I have always been especially self conscious about the upper half of my body for about my entire post-pubertal life. Doing this yoga has given me such an appreciation for my body, and what it can do for me, it has increased my self confidence ten fold.

More importantly though than this small achievement of self confidence, is what it taught me about my postures.  I was able to see the way my body was moving, in particular my spine, in a very clear way.  Doing half moon, I noticed I have been really collapsing into my lower back flexibility in the past.  I was able to see a huge difference as I pulled in my stomach a lot more, and really reached up and over as opposed to just over.  It was much more of a gentle curve rather than an angle which I was getting before.  Camel was also a new experience for me.  The teacher helped me during my third set to get the posture just right and I was amazed at how different it felt.  Contracting my glutes helped me stay in place from the hips down and allowed me to get a lot more movement through the spine, and felt a lot better on my lower back.

I can’t wait to finish off my challenge.  I already feel so accomplished!  2 classes left!

-Claire