After an afternoon on Hampstead Heath with family, by 4:45pm I found myself back at Indaba Yoga Studio where Bryony Bird was teaching on behalf of Amanda Denton (who normally teaches the 5-6:30 Sunday class).
Given my depleted energy levels and based on the renowned rigorous style of Yogasana classes, I was a little intimidated of what to expect from the class. Nevertheless, I vowed to listen to my body, and by 5pm with the energy of 15 or so other students in the room and Bryony’s calm voice, I settled in to the breath and it felt good. Surprisingly, the pace of the class was very accessible, and while a challenging vinyasa class, Bryony suggested options and reminded the students to listen to their own rhythm and not to feel obligated to push oneself into the full variation of every posture. I really appreciated hearing that given my energy, and especially valued it given other Yogasana classes I have taken where the teacher has had the tendency to come off aggressive, pushing students into poses verbally and/or through adjustments for perhaps the wrong reasons.
There was music throughout the class primarily to maintain the rhythm of the breath, and Bryony presented a nice combination of vinyasa, balancing and seated postures. Amoung the postures, we took parivrtti utkatasana to on legged parivrtti utkatasana to parivrtti parsvakonasana (sidenote: why do some teachers start twist sequences on the left? I was taught twists always are initiated from right to left due to digestive movements – ascending to descending colon, but half of the classes I’ve gone to haven’t followed this general rule…any thoughts?). Other asanas included uttitha hasta padangusthasana to virabhadrasana 3, plenty of crescent moon-variation namaskar, ustrasana, 2 urhdva dhanurasana, janursirsasana, ardha matsyendrasaa, tarasana, paschimottanasana…and a truly lovely savasana complete with neck rub.
Bryony was even-keeled throughout and gave good basic instruction into the postures, even if she seemed slightly reserved (it was her third class of the day after all). She gave me a couple of nice adjustments and, even though I’m still definitely not firing with all cylinders, I felt a whole lot better after the class than before. I will be back for more Bryony in February.
Tomorrow, my long awaited return to Anoushka’s class, at the Life Centre, 12:30-2pm. Yoga inspired Pilates….