Monday, 20 June 2011

Two 'personal' Vinyasa Krama style practices


'Even though the book (The complete book of Vinyasa Krama) contains 10 main sequences, the reader will be able to discern more than a hundred asana sequences, each one having a unique structure. In fact each chapter is a major sequence (wave) of many specific sequences (ripples), which itself is made up of a few vinyaas (dops of water). Then the whole book is a mega sequence (tide) of major sequences in the ocean of Yoga'. 
from Ramaswami's September 2009 Newsletter


The first part of this post below was originally included on yesterday's dropback post, I've seperated it off so as not to appear  to suggest that 108 dropbacks have anything to do with Ramaswami's presentation of Vinyasa Krama, the multiple dropbacks are just something else I'm exploring at the moment.

Anyway, it seemed a good idea to put two practices together to see how they differ slightly and besides, I tend to see my weeks practice as a whole rather than seperate and self contained. I like to alternate backbend focused practices with forward bending and hip opening days.  It tends to end up something like this.

Sunday : Bow/meditative sequences ( backbend focus)
Monday ; Seated sequence ( forward bending , counter to yesterday's backbending).
Tuesday : Bow/meditative
Wednesday : Asymmetric ( again, lots of forward bends here aas counter to the previous days back bends)
Thursday : Supine
Friday : Ashtanga primary
Saturday : Ashtanga Intermediate

The sequences mentioned above are pretty much full sequences, other Vinyasa Krama sequences come into my daily practice as alternating subroutines as you'll see below.

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For those interested in what a Vinyasa Krama practice might look when you combine subroutines from different sequences rather than sticking to one full sequence, here's how I approached my own this morning.

Important to remember that I came to VK from Ashtanga so there's always going to be an echo of that in how I approach my practice, the overall structure, Standing, main body of practice, finishing.

I'm not sure Ramaswami would approve of the large number of dropbacks I'm exploring at the moment, although one does turn up in the 'On your feet' standing sequence. He quotes the Hatha Yoga pradipka...

'A Hatayogi should avoid (varjayet) practices that involve undue physical strain/pain(kayaklesa vidhi)--like carrying heavy weights and doing multiple(bahu) suryanamaskaras'
 –-- From Jyotsna, the commentary by Brahmananda on Svatmarama's Hatayogapradeepika

I think 108 or even 56 dropback's may well count as a varjayet practice although the aim is to do them on the breath and thus 'effortlessly', so perhaps not. Obviously 108 is an experiment, Iyengar supposedly recommends 15- 20 although I'd still like to find a quote for that.

Sunday
I should note that it's Sunday and I had a little longer to practice, this took a little over two hours. During the week if I'm doing a backbend focus it'll look pretty much like this although I might trim out some of the postures here and there, a few less repetitions and I'll tend to switch around some of the standing postures.

Tadasana ( couple of nice warm up back bends here, especially the twisting one, love that)
parsvakonasana ( really like the twist here and think twisting is good backbend prep, am I wrong?)
Uttita paddangusthasana ( like to keep up with these no matter what )

Urdhava Danhurasana
Dropbacks



Padmasana ( a few of these from the video but not all )

Meditation ( repeated mantra about ten minutes).
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Monday
Still around two hours including the Pranayama etc but again you can trim that down by cutting out some vinyasas (variations) and doing less repeats, not staying as long in every posture, it's flexible.

I like seated or Asymmetric as a counter to the previous days backbend focus, yesterday Bow and meditative sequences ( plus all those extra dropbacks).


Tadasana vinyasas (10 minutes of assorted vinyasas from this video, this time a little different from yesterday, I employed some more of the forward bending vinyasas as prep for all the seated forward bends I planned on doing).
3 Sury's

parsvakonasana ( really like the twist here and think twisting is good backbend prep, am I wrong?)
Uttita paddangusthasana ( like to keep up with these no matter what )
Seated sequence ( full sequence here, kind of a counter to yesterday's backbend focus)

Shoulderstand ( five minutes )/ Urdva Danhurasana / Headstand ( ten minutes with some variations in the video )

Meditation ( repeated mantra about ten minutes).

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