Friday, April 10, 2009

Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana

"Say what?" you say? Today I did this really challenging yoga pose and boy did it feel good.

"Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana" translates to "Reverse Half Moon." This is "Half Moon" or "Ardha Chandrasana" (the pictures look similar, you'll notice his arm is switched so he's getting much more of a spinal twist in the first picture):

I was in my standard Friday yoga class. The teacher, Laurie, was switching things up a bit today and did a class focused on strength. She threw this pose in and demonstrated the three modifications: Level One where you kept both hands on the floor; Level Two where you lift your arm and did what the second picture depicts; and Level Three where you reverse it like in the first picture.

After seeing the demonstration from Laurie (who is wicked flexible and makes yoga look so beautiful and effortless) I decided I was sticking with Level Two. She typically gives modifications in this manner and I feel like I'm generally a Level Two. She also was talking today about how you should respect your body and work yoga around your body and not to try to work your body around yoga.

So we went from the Level One pose into the Level Two pose, and then Laurie instructed the Level Three people to move into the Reverse Half moon, which I had already decided I wasn't going to do because I deemed it beyond me. As I'm chilling there, balancing in Half Moon, sweating freakin' buckets because it's not as easy as it looks (try it), Laurie comes over and whispers to me, "Don't you want to try it?"

To which I responded, "I don't know, should I?"

And she said absolutely and helped me do it.

I couldn't freaking believe it! I was doing it! When I started regularly practicing yoga four months ago, my skills were so bad you couldn't even call them skills. My main reason for starting yoga regularly was my flexibility was so lacking. At first I was a wee bit disappointed with how long progress was taking. But lately I've noticed my flexibility is really improving--I'm able to reach father in poses and do so much more.

I have a lot of fitness goals going right now. I'm running three miles three times per week, working on increasing speed through intervals, hills, and sprints. I'm signed up to run the Disney Half Marathon in January, so I'll starting really training for that in September. I'm cross training with spinning twice a week. I strength train three times per week. And I practice yoga twice a week.

It was slow going at first, but especially considering how much I'm squeezing in right now, I'm amazed at my progress. I really am.

If I keep patting myself on the back like this I'm likely to hurt myself!

1 comment:

Amber Greenawalt said...

It great to hear you are happy with how it's going :)