August 23, 2014

WAWADIA update 13 /// Learning With Iyengar, Learning Against Iyengar

There are many who got close to Iyengar's intensity and learned just as much, if not more, by turning the other way. You will not readily find their tributes to the master, because it’s harder to write about learning against someone. The hagiography machine drowns out the nuance.
July 26, 2014

WAWADIA update #12: How Many of Us Are Injured By Chasing a Fading Pleasure?

It is poignant to think that the quest for deeper purification or self-improvement may in some cases form its own injury feedback-loop. Those with the highest investment in practice may often be practicing in part to recover from the effects of practice.
July 25, 2014

WAWADIA UPDATE #11 /// Methods to Reduce Injury: An Interview Subject Speaks Out

Track complaints. Measure their frequency and prioritize them. Propose and design changes. Implement fixes and resolve them. Train staff to do better. Customers expect no less of us and we know that we won't retain them unless we address their issues.
July 15, 2014

WAWADIA Update #10 /// “Lazy people can’t practice”: Thoughts On a Yoga Meme

How would "lazy" apply to the person who has already jumped right in? I only ever hear committed practitioners and teachers quoting it. To me it smacks of an in-group encourashame. I.e., you can be young, old, sick, weak when you start, and as you continue. But once you’ve committed to the system, you really don’t want to be lazy. It sounds like it could be a joke meant to stiffen the resolve of people in doubt. In my work on injuries, I'm very interested in the lag time between when a person first suspects that something is too intense or painful for them in practice, and when they actually stop or alter practice. In between those two points comes a litany of things they are told and learn to tell themselves -- "pain is an opening", "practice requires commitment" etc. -- about the necessity of continuing. It's also in this period that repetitive strain can evolve into chronic injury.