Such a pleasure to see Manju again. I was here in Rethymno for his TT last year and then a week or two later I managed to attend his extra Led class at Stillpoint Yoga (see my previous post, I'm teaching a workshop at StillPoint Sept 9th, Manju is also teaching there for a week or so, it's like being on the same bill as Elvis). So it's been a year but feels like weeks, such a relaxed atmosphere here. This 'relaxation' is important to Manju actually, he's talked several times about the importance of making sure that the person your adjusting is very relaxed, many of the adjustments he presents seem to be more about helping us relax into the postures (love the little massages). It makes sense, if we're stressed, tense, we don't breathe as well and this is a breathing practice. Krishnamacharya too was big on this, it's making the breath smooth and steady that allows us to become proficient in asana.
After a twirl around the table I walk up to the shala and put the camera just inside the door and leave it there for quarter of an hour or so, Manju, Kristina and Nikos working the room ( If anyone in the video is uncomfortable being on my blog or youtube let me know and I'll take it down).
Below is a shot from the second session 'Adjustment clinic, there's Manju, his back towards Nektarios and I.
So, Manju Runs through for or five asana, showing us how he adjusts/assists and then we go off and work with several different partners. One of the great things about Crete is having several participants come back year after year which means that along with Kristina, Nikos and Manju himself there is plenty of guidance. Again the relaxed atmosphere that Manju engenders means that nobody seems shy to call out "Manju, Manju" across the room to double and triple check our adjustments.
|As above if your not comfortable appearing in the any of these photos or videos please let me know and I'll either edit you out or pull the video.|
After the adjustments Manju presents a couple of Pranayama's and then we chant Shanti mantras for fifteen, twenty minutes or so before finishing off for the day with Q and A.
Back to the "relax" theme, I feel particularly laid back this time around, asked all my 'intense, ardent, questions' last year and where in the previous year I was wanting to bring my 'best practice ever', not in the sense of showing off so much ( had been out of action with kidney stones for a couple of months before the TT) but to have my 'best practice', adjusted, assisted, tidied up. This year I'm happy to bring my 'usual' practice, however it is. Currently that's half a series ( primary and 2nd split over four days) as I breath pretty slowly and can't think of a single reason why I should treat the breath in dandasana any different than that in kapo or the vinyasas in between the asana. I'd rather do half a series and savour each posture the same along with standing and finishing than rush through a posture or two.
With the early start the break in between and the long early afternoon session it eels like a long day, however, five hours of yoga practice is, it seems, still not enough for some, my class Vinyasa Krama Tuesday well attended.
|Maha Mudra in My Tuesday Vinyasa Krama Class|
And there's xtra class tonight on the Vinyasa Krama shoulder stand and headstand sequences (supine and inverted sequences), very similar to what we see on the classic Krishnamacharya video from 1938, back when he was teaching the young Pattabhi Jois,
Here's a ink to my previous post for more on my Workshop in London at StillPoint Yoga Sunday September 7th 10-18:00
The History of Krishnamacharya and Ashtanga
Intro to Vinyasa Krama inc. backbending, inversions, pranayama, pratyahara and meditation