Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Day 25 : Marchi (after the sage) subroutine practice notes from Vinyasa Krama On one leg sequence

This subroutine forms a pattern that we find in many of the subroutines. A 'hub' pose (pic 1) a starting position or stithi, here Marichiyasana stithi, the key posture, Marichyasana (pic 4), a number of variations (pic 5, 6 and 7) and finally a counter pose (pic8).

We have the option of practising the whole sequence on one side, the left say and then the right or if we are doing a number of Asymmetric subroutines we might practice all of them on one side before moving on to the other.

There are some other marchi vinyasas and that come up later in the Asymmetric series under Hybrid asymmetric vinyasas. These could be added to this subroutine before the counter pose if we were only including this subroutine in our practice.

Picture 10, Ardha matsyendrasana is not really part of the marchi although it differs from the marchi variation in Picture 7 only by the crossing of the leg and doesn't seem out of place here as an extension or development of the marchi sequence. It appears again at the end of the Asymmetric sequence with the more challenging full kingfisher pose, purna matsyendrasana.

There are a few other postures that I've encountered in the advanced Ashtanga series that don't appear in Ramaswami's Vinyasa Krama book, it's interesting to see where they might be best placed as a development and extension of a subroutine just as ardha matsyendrasana is here.

Remember to lift up and out of the pelvis in preparation for the forward bends. The stretching of the arms overhead in Dandasana should remind us of tadasana.

The tibia (inner shin bone) is kept upright, try to avoid turning it inwards or outwards.

There is a subtle twist at the hips as we bend over the outstretched leg.

The chin is down in a light to strong jaladhara bandha, we aim to bring the forehead to the knee or beyond in vinyasa krama.

We stay in each stage for at least three breaths.

The breaths are long, slow, steady, smooth, aim for five second inhalations but try to extend the exhalations.

As with the standing march we squeeze more air out of the lung by tightening the bind on each exhalation.

As you swing the arm around the knee think of putting on a coat the dipping of the shoulder forward as you reach around, half rotating your arm to get further around the knee.

As you settle into the bind, roll your sit bone over the muscle, once over you become more stable and feel less likely to fall backwards.

Engage the bandhas, mula will ground you providing more stability, sucking in your belly in uddiyana bandha will give you more room for the forward bend.

In the counterpose (pratikriya) ground the toes and really push the hips up on each breath, well be seeing more of these hip lifts in the supine subroutines.

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