Here's an open invitation to visit my new blog, Vinyasa Krama Yoga, sequences & subroutines, humbly dedicated to my teacher Srivatsa Ramaswami. I want to stress humbly because the blog is intended as a presentation of the sequences and subroutines found in his book The complete book of Vinyasa Yoga and yet there are so many errors and inaccuracies that I hesitate to make the association. I hope to update most of the videos ( mostly taken before I attended his VK TT course ) over time to bring them into greater correspondence with the text.
Although much taken with the book, when I first came across it around June 2009 (here's my review, the day after I received it ) I found it difficult to develop a practice based upon it. I was used to Ashtanga and the same set postures every day, faced with the 10 sequences in the book and it's hundreds of vinyasas as well as no DVD's available (unlike Ashtanga ) I really didn't know where to start.
Having so many vinyasas (variations ) made it difficult to learn too, I had to keep stopping to look at the book and work out where I was and how one pose moved into the next and one subroutine into another.
Ramaswami has pointed out that while good to learn the sequences as laid out in the book and how each pose relates to one another, one should not necessarily approach one's daily practice in this manner. He did suggest however, that it might be beneficial to occasionally review the sequences.
The key, for me at least, has been to be to see the book as a collection of subroutines rather than whole sequences or individual postures. In your practice you might do a number of subroutines taken from different sequences based on the needs of your body and ability. Ramaswami stresses some key postures that his teacher, Krishnamacharya, recommended to practice daily, long stays in Paschimottanasana, Sarvangasana, Sirsasana and maha mudra and that, in your daily practice, you might aim to include these postures while attempting to cover a wide range of vinyasas over a weekly or fortnightly cycle.
The new blog seeks to present the different subroutines in order of the book, as divided up and numbered by Ramaswami in his September newsletter. The hope is that a visual representation may help in learning the sequences and transitions.
Here, In my current blog , over the last few weeks I've included some practice reports. The idea is that in the future I can present a report with links to the different subroutines on the sister blog, as well as offering some alternative practices aimed at different levels of ability.
So, for example, I tend to do a variation of the backbend focused practice below, pretty much every other day just switching some of the different vinyasas but keeping a large backbending element. A click on the highlighted subroutine takes you to the video on the sister blog.
Usual key vinyasas but extra attention on backbend variations
*Dropbacks x 5 including Eka & Dwi pada chakra bandhasana.
Triangle Element p.147
On one leg element p87
Standing marichi, Ardha-Badha-padmasana in Vrikshasana (half locked lotus in tree pose inc toe balance) *Natajarasana
*I should really be doing my Paschimottanasana here before Bow rather than after but I want to take a long 10 min paschi as a counterpose to all the backbends coming up.
Bow Sequence p.137
Meditative pose Sequence p.176
Ustrasana (camel) subroutine, includes *Kapotasana and *Eka Pada kapotasana
Paschimottanasana p.71 10 min.
as counter to all the backbending
Apanasana (pelvic lift)
U- formation (arms and legs raised while supine)
Dwipadpitam (Desk pose)
Shoulderstand 5mins p.123
Dropping back into uttana mayurasana as a counterpose
Headstand 10 mins p.161
inc. some lotus variations
Shoulderstand 5 mins p.123
inc. some leg to floor in frount and behind vinyasas.
feet together UD as counterpose
Lotus element p.189
Nadi Shodhana 30 minutes
Mantra meditation 30 min
takes about 2 1/2 hours
As you can see, there are still some videos I haven't posted. I'm thinking it might be possible to link the videos together and perhaps speed it up to have a video of the actual practice. I'm planning on posting some pranayama videos in the next week or two as well. I also hope to link from there to posts here on some of the more challenging postures I've already posted on in the context of Ashtanga.
The new blog then, is intended as an aid/resource to help in developing a Vinyasa Krama practice, to make it easier, more accessible, as such I welcome suggestions and recommendations for improving it.
Links to the individual subroutines can also be found at the bottom of this blog