Sunday, 29 November 2009

Imagine all the people......breathing together

I recently watched the film the US vs John Lennon. it is a great film, especially if like me you were too young to know the history John's life, despite living in Liverpool. Note to reader, I'm not from Liverpool or I am sure I would have heard all about it from the age of two!

Anyhow, in David Swenson's workshop he talked about the universality of breathing. How if you asked a group of people to Om then some would say they would feel it went against their religion. If you ask them to breathe though they would be okay with that. At which point my mind jumped to the song, imagine. I don't know why, it was a cheesy moment, we were all smiling.

Imagine all the people breathing together,
For me the most useful part of the workshop was recapping on the adjustments I learnt last year for teaching bandhas. I had forgotten them and will now feel more confident using them. Also learnt a new great adjustment on to help people access the upper lungs. Not sure I can explain clearly over the internet but you place one hand below sternum and one hand on upper back and lift with the person's inhalation.
I have at least another post in me about pranayama but I will do that another day. Today I went and did a mostly uneventful mysore practice. Felt great for it, no drama, drop backs feel fab after dhanurasana. Met Mel and Kevin for breakfast after practice. Lovely to chat with them both about yoga, yoga and well mysore yoga, yoga with David Swenson, yoga in India, you get the picture :)

Tomorrow I am practicing with my teacher....

Here is the trailer from the John Lennon film.


  1. You can't beat a 3 hour after practice brekky on a wet Sunday, talking about practice, tho think we got some funny looks doing the mini Bhuja entry demo's for Mel!

    Enjoy your practice tomorrow, have a safe trip home.

  2. Hi Helen - which adjustments did he recap with you for teaching bandhas? That sounds interesting! He is coming to my city late next year, I'm really looking forward to it...

  3. Hi Kevin, yeah it was great to meet up and not have to rush. Who knows we may have inspired some new yogis in pret. When Sharath was on tour on the last day, the pret was full of Ashtangi's glowing and exhausted. They must have wondered where we had all come from.

    Hi KMB,

    The adjustment/ partner work I am referring to is one that Pattabhi Jois used to do to him back in the day. Partner puts thumbs three fingers below the navel, apart making a triangle with the navel, push firmly but not so it hurts obviously. Encourage partner to keep this part still and breathe into the rest of the body above this point.

    Late next year eh, that's forward workshop planning. I thought I was preplanning with the intention of kino in March. Are you in Canada? David Swenson is a great teacher, I love the way he always makes room for discussion both with him and in partners. I learn a lot from that.

  4. I was telling a friend how we had been doing Bhuja demo's in Pret, she suggests next time we put a hat on the floor and collect enough to pay for our croissants!

  5. Yes - I'm in Canada, thanks for describing adjustment for me...Kino in March, lucky you! Look forward to reading about it.