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So I’m on day 12 of my supported headstand yoga challenge and I thought I’d write an update.  Day 1 was a bit of a challenge in itself.  I wasn’t very stable and had problems staying upright for very long.  I wasn’t able to keep my feet together without falling over and was inverted for maybe 10 seconds.

It didn’t take me long to start to gain balance.  On day 4 I felt a lot more solid and I was able to hold the position with my feet together.  Now, on day 12 I feel like I can stay inverted for a much longer period of time and keep my feet together.  This stability gives me the opportunity to focus on my breathing which isn’t easy when inverted.  I’m confident that by day 30 I will have improved a great deal more.

So I was showing my friend who is a yoga instructor and she gave me a couple of tips which I don’t think I’m ready to implement.  Quite honestly, I don’t think I have the strength in my shoulders or back at this point.  She told me that I’ll eventually want to get in to the supported headstand pose by putting my arms and head down then walking my feet toward my body.  Then, as my friend showed me, I’ll keep my legs straight and feet together as I lift.  Right now I’m lifting one leg at a time and they’re bent.  Still, I’m reaping the benefit of being inverted as well as gaining strength in my shoulders and core.  

I’m more than 1/3 of the way through my challenge and still enjoying it.

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Today I did a few minutes of yoga a little later than I usually do.  I had a couple errands to run with my youngest who was wearing her new leotard/yoga outfit.  Upon arriving home I was kind of grumpy.  It’s 88 degrees today and I have no A/C in my car.  Still, after eating and few minutes of yoga my mood improved drastically.  I was sitting on the floor stretching my hips and told my wife I wrote on my blog that I was going to do a headstand every day for 30 days.  She suggested I take pictures of me doing a headstand every day so I can see how much I’m progressing.  What a brilliant idea from an amazing wife.  She’s already been taking pictures for me so I can see my posture in each position.  As someone doing yoga at home without a trainer present this is important to me.  So here is my day one supported headstand.

supported headstand yoga challenege day 1

 

Surprisingly I feel like my back is nice and straight.  In my warm up headstand I rolled my hips slightly forward and was able to get my legs a little more upright but I soon fell over.  Pictures are always hard to time and I did, for a moment, get my feet together.  This picture is a great representation of the overall headstand that lasted about 20 seconds.

If any of your more experienced yogis out there see anything I may be missing please comment and let me know.  If you’d like to join me in the challenge then comment and let me know as well, I’d love to hear from you.  There is strength in numbers.

I love a challenge.  Why wouldn’t I?  Since I was a young kid I’ve been challenged to keep up with my big brother, to learn how to use computers (as primitive as they were in the 80’s), to make the basketball team, to graduate high school then college, to get a job… I thrive on a challenge.

I went back in time on my personal facebook page.  Not far, I just wanted to see what day I started doing yoga.  I think it was March 1st and since it was the beginning of a new month, why not make that the date?  So I’ve been doing yoga for a month and a half.  Nearly ever day… nearly.

So I think I will challenge myself to something.  For the next 30 days I want to do a supported headstand pose.  It wont take long, just a minute or two but will help me in core strength and balance.  I also want to challenge myself to do yoga 6 days per week even if it is just a couple of poses.  I want to build and build upon this and focus on opening up my chest, gaining arm and core strength and improving hip flexibility.  At the end of 30 days I should be a lot further along than I am now and will issue myself a new challenge going forward.  Wanna start with me?  It starts tomorrow, April 15th.

So late last year I decided to start taking medication for my ADD.  I was seeing that my attention problems were causing some difficulties in my life and decided enough was enough.  Since ADD is treated with stimulants (non stimulants are available but they’re more costly) I decided to stop drinking coffee and tea with caffeine in it.

For a couple of weeks it was a bit of a struggle but I got used to it.  Besides, the medication helped me stay awake for a while.  Eventually I got used to the meds and they weren’t keeping me as awake.  Ever since I started doing yoga I’ve found a couple moves really get the blood flowing and the heart beating and increase my energy.  I start out my routine in a bridge pose before turning over and doing a cobra pose.  This combination invigorates me to the point where I feel like I’m going to pass out at times.  But after doing my morning yoga I feel as if I have energy to make it through the day.

As I stated previously, I’m about four weeks in to my yoga journey and I’ve been working a few minutes a day trying to improve my poses.  I want to learn my poses correctly and try not to worry about the health benefits of them, although that will happen naturally.  One pose I’ve been working on is called Crow Pose or Bakasana as it is called in Sanskrit.  It isn’t perfect and it takes a lot of effort but it is happening.

Crow Pose (Bakasana)

Crow Pose (Bakasana)

This pose take a lot of strength in your wrists and forearms as well as your core to accomplish.  It feels like a full body workout when I’m doing it and I can only hold it for about 5 seconds.  When I’m not working on this pose I’ve been doing some strength training trying to develop strength in my wrists.  It seems to be working as I’m able to get out of this pose without falling down now.

I wanted to learn a very advanced pose even though I’m a beginner.  I’m a bit impatient like that.  I looked through a lot of the poses and decided this one would be hard but not out of the question.  It didn’t require me standing on my head, just balance and strength.  I guess I didn’t realize how hard it would be but I found a video entitled “Hard Poses Made Easy” and decided to go for it.

This video was enough and as you can see I’ve accomplished a crow pose.  My butt is a little high and I can only hold it for so long but with time I plan on getting better and better.  Yoga really has been a great journey so far.

I’ve been practicing yoga for about four weeks now.  I’m not real good at it yet, nor am I that flexible but I’ve been able to accomplish a few things that my friend/yoga instructor has given me some praise for and it’s a great feeling.  After watching a video that showed me how to do an advanced pose called “Dancer Pose”.  It is a great pose for balance and I can really feel it in my thighs.

Dancer Pose (Natarajasana)

Tim doing dancer pose (Natarajasana)

As you can see, my 5 year old also loves doing yoga with me.  In fact, she has a kid’s yoga video that I put on for her that she loves doing.  I have a long way to go with this pose but it only takes a couple of minutes per day to work on.  In fact, looking at this picture I can already tell I am able to bend my leg up and lean forward a little more than I had last week when I had this picture taken.

Below is a video that will show you how to do this pose in 7 steps.  It is really quite easy to get in to the pose as a beginner and you can work on perfecting it as time goes on.

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