Session 1: Unravelling the Gatekeepers (Sat, 1:30-3:30pm)
In Ashtanga Yoga,there are particular postures that are often referred to as ‘gatekeepers’ because they frequently halt the progression through the series of even the most enthusiastic and determined student. In other styles as well there would be postures in any given sequence that might be considered peak postures, providing extra challenges for the student. Presupposing that the student has the technical knowledge to perform the particular posture, sometimes the difficulty is a strength thing, sometimes a missing range of motion (ROM) or easily a combination of both, maybe balance or even fear enter into the equation. In this workshop we single out some of the more tricky postures such as Bujipidasana, Marichyasana B & D, Supta Kurmasana and Pasasana as vehicles for understanding how to deconstruct difficult postures into understandable elements that can then be worked on individually or used as the basis for sensible lead in sequencing. If time allows we will also open up the discussion to include postures being worked on by individuals at the workshop. Of course what will be a peak posture for one person might not present much challenge at all for another depending on their individual make up. Exploration of these more difficult postures allows you to better understand where your restrictions and weakness might be as they are less easily accommodated or avoided in these situations.
Session 2: Hip Joint and Related Postures (Sat, 4-6pm)
Looks at the construction of the hip joint and how individuals may differ, the muscles around the joint and how they will influence movements in certain directions. So many yoga postures involve a certain degree of freedom in the hips and sometimes it can be hard to determine what is stopping us reaching our desired position. Practical exploration of groups of postures under the headings of forward folding, hip rotations and hip ab/adductions will allow students to discover where they need to focus their attention and how to effectively work on increasing the ranges of motion. Postures commonly used for exploration include, Baddha Konasana (Butterfly), Upavishta Konasana (wide legged forward fold), Squatting, Paschimottanasana (seated forward fold), Firelog and Virasana variations (Heros pose). We will also consider how many postures may fall unbeknown into the category of forward folding and explain what will be the likely expression of restriction.
Session 3: Shoulder Joint and Related Postures (Sun, 1:30-3:30pm)
Here we examine the shoulder girdle and shoulder joint, issues that influence range of motion and the potential for injury. Quite a few practitioners experience either restricted range of motion at this joint due to postural patterns, or pain during specific movements in yoga. We will consider common restrictions and how to work on them as well as alignment cues to find more comfort and help minimise the risk of repetitive strain issues. There will also be discussion and practical implementation of shoulder related postures such as, arm balances, down dog, chaturanga, binding, reverse prayer.
Session 4: Spine, SI joint, Backbending and Twists (Sun, 4-6pm)
It is not uncommon for students to feel a degree of discomfort when performing backbends or when embarking on taking on some of the more challenging foot behind head postures. By understanding the construction of the spine and the surrounding muscles it becomes evident as to the types of movements that it is designed to perform in certain areas as well as the potential mechanism of injury. We clarify the common spinal injuries such as herniated and bulging discs as well as discuss the possible causes of SI Joint pain. The groups of postures discussed and explored practically are backbends and twists, and the importance of the integration of movements at other major joints of hips and shoulders will be demonstrated. We will endeavour to during the course of the workshop to allow students to determine where their own restrictions are and how to work with them. For those students that feel they are already too mobile we will look at how to build strength and stability.
Each Workshop: $55
Full workshop: $200