August is a good time to take a break from routine. It is the traditional month for taking holidays in Europe. So the Rogue in me will be taking a few weeks away from posting. Look for new content starting in September. Topics will include:
- making yoga a sustainable business
- why you are not working hard enough in your postures – no excuses, and…
- how fighter pilots and Navy SEALS can teach yogis a thing or two.
In the meantime, if you want to read some of my more popular posts, check these out:
“A cautionary tale on operating yoga studios”
“Questioning the Mysore Style”
“Apprenticing in Yoga”
“Why you will success with a minimal practice done daily”
Also, I will be leading two workshop on the Moon Sequence (Chandra Krama), designed by Matthew Sweeney, at the Washington Yoga Center. You can sign up for September 24th or October 22nd.
Vale! (Stay Strong!)
Vinyasa Krama Playful, Versatile, Creative
Mindful, Focused, Consistent
with Matthew Sweeney
1. Vinyasa Krama is Yoga tailored for individuals – sequences that are scaled and modified for students with any physical condition. Students learn sequencing as a model for exploration rather than a goal to be reached. This enables all Vinyasa Krama teachers to help a huge variety of students with different rates of learning. One claim we make on VK teaching is that we are able to teach more students than most if not all other Vinyasa or Ashtanga teachers – as neither age nor ability is a barrier. Potentially any sequence or tradition can be used under the VK umbrella.
2. Self Practice – rather than focusing on Led classes where the teacher will often teach what he or she is best at, we focus on self practice so the emphasis is on student maturity and learning / experiencing at your own pace. Self practice is the key to all other aspects of Yoga – Pranayama, meditation, and self inquiry. A key point we make is the importance of not relying on only one technique, sequence or tradition – the technique or tradition is the map, not the territory. A Self Practice teacher guides and encourages; he or she has to be objective and able to provide time, space and feedback. Self Practice class sizes are also generally limited in order to give individual attention.
3. Pranayama – Vinyasa Krama breathing techniques are comprehensive, taught over a period of time, in a step by step manner, via self practice. Students learn based on commitment and ability, and are assessed as to whether each technique is appropriate. As most Pranayama classes are taught in a group format, this comes with some significant problems. That is, a lack of individual guidance, plus the tendency to teach more advanced techniques (Kumbhaka for example) before a student knows how to breathe properly and without effort.
4. Self Inquiry and Relational Development – we explore self awareness in the context of our relationships to others. This key aspect of integrating Yoga, Self and relationships is usually overlooked or even abused by many teachers, Yoga or otherwise. A teacher / student relationship must be ethical first, and technical second. It is personal and therefore requires a clear mind and open heart.
5. Meditation and Advaita Vedanta – we also focus on the big picture, continually returning to the spaciousness of the natural, effortless, non-dual self. The techniques are simply pointing at the same universal truth every time – I am that.
For more on Matthew Sweeney, his books and DVDs, and his courses, visit http://www.yogatemple.com