Monday, May 29, 2006


more yoga with which i struggle

this being a holiday weekend, my local yoga studio is offering only a truncated schedule and with mostly subsitute teachers. yesterday i went to try a new teacher, who was certified out of the sonic studio.

as you can tell from sonic's website, it's trying too hard to be hip, which means, well, it's not. . .

i had already heard about the sonic penchant for making up "asanas," such as the dreaded "rockstar" pose, and the cutesy renaming of common poses and mudras -- i nearly fell outta my virabhadrasana (warrior one pose) when the teacher referred to uttarabodhi mudra (sometimes called "jupiter mudra" for those who are into jyotisha) as "charlie's angels mudra."

and when the teacher urged us to send loving thoughts towards our favorite movie star, think about what qualities that star had, and then realize we too were movie stars, i thought, to retreat from sanskrit to pure noo yawk-ese, "i wuz gonna plotz!"

the class itself was mixture of straight-ahead vinyasa, with a little shiva rea thrown in -- the "dancing warrior" sequence is familiar to everyone who's done her cd -- some kundalini bits as evidenced by brief bursts of fast repetitive movement, a parsvottonasanaa (pyramid pose) vinyasa right out of gary kraftsow, all tossed together in a rather confused sequence (as might be expected by this dog's breakfast of stylistic combinations i'm describing), and overly loud disco music.

thanks to gloria gaynor, i did survive.

long-time readers know that i often say how ashtanga makes me grumpy, but boy howdy sonic yoga nearly turned me into a ravening lha-mo. it's enough to make me run to eddie stern's and never leave.

is yoga now some kind of free-form dance-movement? i shouldn't just slag sonic; i was likewise alarumed when another very popular teacher at my local studio (the one who refuses to do sun salutations) also introduced a pose he invented.

he called it "krishna pose," and it consists of a rather square-dance-like curtsy, whereby you cross one foot behind the other, bend at the knees slightly and hold your hands out to the side of your face as if playing a flute! said teacher confessed he didn't really know how to hold a flute and had no idea how they were played, but "we could get the idea, you know."

i did it twice before i realized it was a classic aerobics "grapevine" with wacky arms.

i feel lost in a world of gym yoga taught by bored aerobics hunks who need to pick up an extra paycheck on days when there aren't any auditions for reality tv. there has to be a middle ground between ultra-yoga purism and this, a place where a diversity of serious yoga can play itself out. . .

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posted by fortune | 10:16 AM | top | link to this | email this: | links to this post | | 4 comments

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