"Yoga is the practice of quieting the mind. "
~ Patanjali, translated from Sanskrit

  I try to refrain from  bringing my personal  opinion into things when it  comes to the Ashtanga Practice, but the time has come. For those who love and practice Ashtanga we go with the tradition and live the lifestyle as Guruji has stated in the Yoga Mala. Ashtanga gets a bad rap on injuries and yes practioners will get injured if they don’t listen to their bodies and only do what is appropriate for where their bodies are at on any given day. As westerners we want everything right now or we change systems, instead of working and practicing until we do the prior asanas required to allow us to do more advanced asanas we force ourselves into  one asana after another and then injure ourselves and blame it on the Ashtanga system. I personally have been healing myself from a recent 4 level spinal fusion with my practice no physical therapy just Ashtanga and advice from my teacher Annie Pace  and a few questions with talking with David  Keil another Ashtangi on his points with anatomy. It’s amazing what you can do with rods and screws in your back if you listen to your body and practice with appropriate mindset. You can use all the excuses you want but please for those of you who do not practice Ashtanga don’t blame the practice for your knee or other injuries just because you did practice Ashtanga at some point in your life and decided that since you couldn’t move through and  stay with 6 days a week and Saturday and Moon days off  so you decided to move to  another road, look at what you are doing in the practice you participate in now . My issues have  come from poor genetics with the spine nothing more but I have injured myself practicing just by not being focused that day instead of just taking the day off. Go to Mysore and practice the traditional way and get humbled when you are stopped because you can’t do a  posture as you are being protected from harming yourself until you are ready. I was so amazed as practioners sat and waited when they were stopped and joined in for closing sequence no one was judged and they were able to practice safely another day, Nuff said, Namaste Larry

May 4th, 2009

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