Friday, May 29, 2009

Paying Homage

Last Sunday's tribute class to Pattabhi Jois was very nice. A picture of Guruji was on a projector screen at the front of the class, and there were lots of people, including children. A section of the studio was set aside for the kids, and the studio was packed with mats just inches from each other.

As ashtanga is still in its infancy stage in KL and not many people know much about Guruji, Manoj started by talking a bit on the biography of Guruji and his dedication in teaching ashtanga. The picture of a 20 year old Manoj with Guruji was memorable, and brought some laughter (maybe because of the post practice hair!). Fantastic also to see Manoj's son and wife with Guruji many years later (how many is for Manoj to reveal, I'm afraid).

Practice started after listening to a CD recording of Guruji doing the opening chant. Quite fittingly, the practice also ended with Guruji's closing chant just before savasana. It was a very nice tribute and it left me wishing I had gone to Mysore earlier to hear his chant in person.

Thank you for the gift of a magnificent practice!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Class Tribute To Guruji This Sunday

There will be a class dedicated to Guruji, Pattabhi Jois, this Sunday at the studio I go to. It will start at 9.30am and last 90 minutes. Please go to studio 2, which is above Island Cafe.

Monday, May 18, 2009


Guruji, Shri K. Pattabhi Jois, passed away on May 18, 2009. Though I have not met him personally, I was fortunate enough to catch a glimpse of him when I was in Mysore last year. I had wanted to say thank you to him for introducing this type of yoga to the world.

The practice has given me lots of joy. My trip to Mysore has certainly given me an insight to the generosity of the Jois family in teaching this practice to the world. Then I studied with Saraswathi, and I was so in awe of her endless energy and enthusiasm in teaching the class. Guruji must have set the standards; and I'm sure the teaching of ashtanga is in good hands with Sharath and Saraswathi.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Back To Practice

Quick update on my visit to the cardiologist. Stress test is fine except that my base BP is on borderline hypertensive. Medication is recommended, although he did say it's not needed now - but early treatment is preferred to late. However, my doctor wanted to monitor the BP a few more times before I take the plunge to medication. Apparently, she felt the cardiologist tend to take the more aggressive stance, while she is the conservative one. So, I guess I'm still in a limbo.

Life continues and I'm back into my yoga practice. My first couple of practices were careful and slow. I'm pleased and pleasantly surprised that I haven't lost too much flexibility; and with each additional practice I'm reaching my pre-injured state. Stamina, though, has taken a hit. Vinyasas felt heavy!! But so nice to be back with the practice - the breaths, the movements, the sweat (it's been super hot in KL these few weeks) and the final releasing of everything at savasana!

Final test of my getting back in action later tonight. Have futsal this evening. Am so inspired - anyone saw Man Utd's third goal in the 2nd leg of the Champion's League semifinal? Counter attack to the perfection!!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Getting Back

Went to the gym to get my battered body back into action, The fond memories of the gym came back as I entered the gym. This was the place where I have spent a lot time doing rehab exercises after the surgery on my shoulder. I haven't even started yoga then. But the awareness in healing my body started in this place.

Anyway, started on the treadmill. The back felt fine even at jogging pace. Then tested range of motion with light weights. Felt really good after the session. I think it may be good to set some time aside for strength and cardio work, besides the yoga. I find sometimes with ashtanga, where for me the sequence is repetitive, there is a tendency of overworking certain joint movements. Perhaps, sacrificing some practice days with gym days has its benefits.

Time, though, is a constraint. At times I'm tempted to just practice daily in my eagerness to advance further in the primary series. That's when I find the discipline to practice detachment hard. This may all be a moot point. I have an appointment to do a stress test with a cardiologist as part of my medical check up. With my family's history of high blood pressure and diabetes, I may well have to do a regular cardio regime. Question will be whether I need to go on medication ...