20 Oct 2010

My 11th Practice

Exhausted. So tired body, my muscles are sore. I had absolutely no energy this morning, but I went to the Shala anyway. I think, that this is one of the things, which people, who don’t practice themselves, don’t understand. That it isn’t actually so difficult to do those postures once a week, but it’s really hard to repeat those postures six days per week. Every morning, even when you don’t feel like it, even when it rains, even when you ate too much last night, even when you have a headache, even when your back is killing you, even when you couldn’t sleep, even when you feel that you can’t breath properly, even when you want to be childish, lay on the floor and cry. Even then, and specially then, you go to the Shala and do your best. And sometimes after that everything magically changes during your practice and you feel ok (or even great) afterwards.

I highly admire those people, who are practicing alone every morning at home. They must have so much more discipline than I have. In Mysore, you meet those people a lot. Some of them have even started ashtanga alone, reading books, watching videos and trying asanas themselves. I feel here ridiculously spoilt to be able to practice in Helsinki every morning with extremely good and experienced teachers. In Helsinki, we have great possibilities to practice ashtanga and we can actually choose the shala (and the teacher) which is the best for us. My home shala has always been in Annankatu (Helsinki Ashtanga Yoga School), but many Finnish students are pleased to go and practice in Moola, Studio 8 and Shanti, too.

I am every day thankful to Annankatu’s teachers. To Taina (Sandelin), who was my first teacher and showed me first time, how to practice Sun Salutations. To Virpi (Karjalainen), who watched over one year me trying to close Marichyasana D, supported me and gave me a big smile, when I finally did it alone. To Marke (Murtomäki), who is so patient and so mellow, that you can only admire her beautiful personality and hope that you could get one day even small portion of all those good qualities, which she has. To Sami (Mälkiä), whose adjustments are so good and to Pia (Lehtinen), who always sees something else than the other and gives you so good advices. And to Juha (Javanainen), who taught me a lot during my first yoga retreat in Houtskär.

And every morning, when I stand up, I think about Fatima (Witick), because Fatima is one of the reasons, why I am here and why I can walk as well as practice yoga without pain again. Fatima is a huge personality, quite character and very inspiring person. During last spring, I learned from her so much about pilates, proper breathing technique, good posture and deep stretching that I will always owe her a million. I can guarantee, that if you take her lesson, she will give you very much hard time, but afterwards you will feel like somebody gave you a jackpot. My advise is that every Finnish yogi should try Fatima’s deep stretching class. After that you are like a new person!

Yes. Today’s practice wasn’t flying. It was sweaty and tired. I did the whole practice anyway, Sharath assisted me with Supta Kurmasana. And I got ”good” again, when he saw me sweating like a pig as well as pushing like a maniac to close my hands (which I actually did) in Supta Kurmasana. I was laughing aloud finally, when I jumped back last time, because I was so tired and sweaty, that I was hardly able to see anything. But hey, it was totally worth it!

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