Part of the good mood was possibly due to watching one of Meghan Currie's videos before practice somebody had linked to one she did recently on the beach.
Vinyasa, that linking of breath and movement....I get so wrapped up with the breath, especially lately that I tend to forget the whole movement aspect. Meghan reminds you of that joy of movement that perhaps we often forget in this practice when we focus on the static aspect of the stay in the asana. Full vinyasa brings back some of that joy and a good breath focus too can bring out that sense of movement as you move in deeper with every breath, but Meghan she's almost bacchanalian in the dance like flow from one posture to the next, it's like, "oh yeah, look what we do". I might not plan to practice like that myself anytime soon but this morning, I must admit, I was kind of tempted, if only for the sheer joy of it.
One more thing about Vinyasa, the vinysa count is to highlight which breaths go with which movement, where the inhalation goes, where the exhalation goes, that doesn't mean that we cant squeeze in a couple of extra breaths where appropriate. If you have a dodgy knee for example or are working on a particular posture It's fine to take a couple of extra breaths to work your way into the pose using our vinyasa awareness to suggest when to lengthen on the inhalation perhaps and to deepen, to work our way further in on each exhalation. We can also stay for three, five, ten breaths twent-five or even more in a posture before resuming the count as we exit as well as take a couple of extra breaths if necessary on the exit, or go straight in and out of the posture on the breath with no stay at all in the variations say, perhaps just the key asana of that group. I would argue that we can find evidence for this in Krishnamacharya's Yoga Makaranda and Pattabhi Jois' Yoga Mala.
That said I'm all for the semblance at least of a seemingly fixed system with a fixed count. The trick seems to retain that seemingly fixed framework and yet retain enough wiggle room.
And you don't want to wiggle too much perhaps in one practice.
Here's the beach clip from Meghan I saw the link to this morning and then the other one because its a classic, love the improvisation.
Music by: mock and toof~ farewell to wendo
For some reason the 'watch it on youtube button isn't showing up anymore so here's the link to Meghan Currie"s Youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/KeaghanlizaMurrie
And here website http://www.meghancurrieyoga.com
Been meaning to write this long post on whether Ashatnaga and Vinyasa Krama are compatible or if the principles are completely different and if in practicing one you are betraying the principles of the other.
Decided that's not the case.
If you practice a fast, short breath, Ashatanga then perhaps but if your breathing is long and slow and you stay in your postures for as long as indicated, those longer stays in finishing postures for example then it's very much in line with Vinyasa Krama. Your covering a wide range of asana, there's the long stays in key postures.
Ashtanga is a Vinyasa Krama.
The only problem comes if you'r too strict in your Ashtanga and not taking into account the needs of your own body but I'm thinking more and more that even within Ashtanga everyone is adapting the practice, certain postures we'll back off slightly if we have little tweaks or weak areas... we'll milk certain other postures for all they're worth one morning if we feel the need in our bodies, the up dog and Urdhva danurasana say, if we feel we need a bit more of a back stretch, we're always adapting the practice, it's just a little more subtle than perhaps it appears.
The sequences in Vinyasa Krama are more for learning the relationships of the different asana, once we've learned that we still have to build our daly practice. In Vinyasa Krama that might mean different is 'routines' each day, in Ashatnaga the postures are the same but perhaps the stress we give to some of the postures within that fixed sequence changes daily.
Either way I feel less hung up on the issue....which is good, no.