Tag Archives | kurmasana

A Great DVD On Yoga Adjustments By David Keil

David Keil has a fantastic 2-DVD set on “Adjustments” that is great for any serious practitioner as well as teachers.  I had never seen anything of this quality!  (Don’t miss the end of the post for give-away!)


Not only does David show useful adjustments for a huge array of poses. He does so in different bodies so that you can see the nuances of what a good teacher would go through, need to think about, and navigate as he or she is helping.

In a way it is a much better product than any book out there that may show adjustments because of how interactive it is and the ample variety of examples for different circumstances.

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Never Believe All The Mind Says: Here is Evidence That It Lies

It was raining yesterday while I practiced at home and the darkness of the sky gave me a feeling of unease. I decided to video-record a pose or two. Not that this would ease feelings, but at least it was something to do.  Perhaps I was looking for a distraction.
Rainy day

I recorded the sequence of Bujapidasana and Kurmasana, the first two “core” poses of the primary series, and by core I mean “hard”, the poses where the action is at, where we attempt to float, put legs behind the head, etc.

This Kurmasana picture is from the video:

there is no way you can do that, said my mind

As soon as I finished the pose I came back to the camera to watch the clip, and that is when I heard my mind tell me, in so many words: “There is no way you can do that.”

That is what the mind said as I was looking at the pose I had been in 40 seconds ago.

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John Campbell’s Brilliance

I finally had a chance to talk to John -my Ashtanga yoga teacher in NYC- as you all recommended, and regarding my paralyzing lower back pain that happened a few weeks ago.  John asked me to give a chronological account of what exactly happened, I said:

– 2 weeks ago woke up with spasms of back pain which immobilized me.
– Any movement at all sent me into agony
– Stopped practicing
– David Garrigues and Joy recommended I read Mind Over Back Pain.
 I did.
– Realized some emotional conversations had to take place. I had those conversations.

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Yoga is Killing Me

Came into the shala yesterday with a bad mood, my back was hurting badly, perhaps a combination of pushing it in the backbends and a couple of deep kurmasana adjustments that are very new to me.  Something about my right leg going to new places and bothering my neck.  Had to ask the assistants to not help me so much and thought about “hiding” if such a thing is possible. It is not.

Afterwards and to begin with I took a catatonic 3 hour nap after eating at RRR.  Then, in the span of twenty four hours (James counted) I said that yoga is ‘killing me’ three times.

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Going Beyond The Physical Capability

I had stopped trying! Before I went away from the practice for what seemed like an eternity and was 2 months in actual earth-terms, I had simply stopped trying. I was doing my practice every day but I think I had come to a compromising notion of what ‘my edge’ was. It was not. I had fallen into the trap of confusing edge with boredom, or with ‘that’s about enough’.
Over the weekend I watched a great DVD on backbends (Grimmly reviewed it today) and was taken by the instructor’s suggestion to ‘go beyond the physical limit‘.  I frowned.
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