I'm spending a few days pulling in as opposed to reflecting out. I'm in Miami practicing with my teacher....5 whole days to be a student. :)
Practicing here is not like practicing anywhere else. The space where my teacher has morning Mysore class holds 5 students at a maximum. The space is small, intimate, and there is nowhere to hide. You could imagine that the adjustments and attention from an experienced teacher in that small group could spoil a person!
The best part for me personally about that space is the constant sound of David breathing. Even when he is on the "far" side of the room, I can still hear the sound of full, even breathing. As my attention sinks deeper inward, it starts to feel almost as if the room itself is breathing...inhale, expand, exhale, contract.
The Ashtanga Vinyasa practice really is a "breathing practice". With each trip I make here, I find the breath leading me into a steadier, lighter practice.
On this trip in particular, I started the 5 days of practice with some stress in my mind that had dug itself deeply into my body. In practice the day before I drove down, I had the feeling that I just wasn't getting any breath into those tight areas where I had deposited the stress for dealing with later.
In the first practice here, I felt like I was fighting my own body: trying to send breath into tight areas, realizing that I would have to let those tissues open if I was going to get some breath in there, noting that I felt some resistance to opening up...
...like all that I didn't want to think about right then would open up with the tissues...because of course it would...
Slowly after 4 days of practice with David, things are opening up and sliding back into place. One more day of practice to try to deepen the breath just a little bit more
....next, working to carry that back with me into my solo practice and teaching practice