Sirsasana - can do it at home okay, but in class I'm having trouble doing it towards the end of class. Takes me quite awhile to mentally prepare before going up, and once I have the pose I can't hold it for long, for fear of falling over and just not enough stamina or something. Claudia talked about 2 kinds of sirsasanas in her blog. I think I like the bregma version at home. In class I seem to do the crown headstand, or whatever version that will permit my feet to lift off the ground and provide a drishti so I don't get distracted by classmates behind me. Balance is a bigger issue than back curvature at the moment. Teacher told me to have my elbows closer together (because apparently they move apart once I'm up in the air. Who knew?) and that helped.
Jump backs - played with blocks today. I can get my legs off the ground with blocks under my hands for added arm length, yay! However, once I'm in lolasana I am completely stuck. I have no momentum for jumping back. Apparently I'm supposed to bend my arms to shift my center of gravity... hmm.. not happening right now. Arms are still not strong enough and ass is so heavy any shift in center of gravity (ie. shift of pelvis in mid-air) results in my body gets confused about what it can and cannot do. 2 solutions -
1. Keep practicing for many more life times.
2. Reduce size of ass (harder to achieve, but I think it'll be sooooo effective). I need a junk food police to hang out with me 24/7.
Forearm stands and handstands - yes yes I know they are not part of the Primary series, but I've been playing with them since I've discovered that achieving them is possible within this life time. Too chicken to do either of them without a wall within reach yet. I feel like my lower back isn't stable enough for me to hold these poses on my own, but it could be more of a mental block than a physical issue.
Urdhva dhanurasana - again, lower back feels unstable. I can feel stuff is moving around in the lower back spinal area, and that creeps me out. Can anyone share with me their experience working on this pose? I can't figure out if it's my spinal discs moving around or if it's my ligaments or whatever else is holding up my spine in that area. I can't distinguish actual pain sensations from soreness/discomfort from strong emotional feelings in this pose.
Chakrasana - exactly how important is the correctness of this move? I've been doing a judo/kung fu backward roll, using all momentum and trying to stay off the head completely. I think the "correct" way of doing this is actually going on the crown of the head a little bit. I haven't gotten any corrections yet, probably because the teacher thinks it's better to try to do some version than not to try it at all.
Bakasana - I seriously thought I'd totally have those pose down after 1 year of yoga practice. It's still difficult after 1.5 years! Another ass-heavy problem? I think I can hold the pose for about 3 breaths before my knees start sliding down my arms. Maybe it's a legs-are-too-heavy problem too.
Supta kurmasana - I can bind finger tips now! This is happening after I've been instructed to bind my wrist in all marichyasanas rather than just clasping my fingers together. I'm literally pulling my hand slightly out of its socket in every bind.. is that healthy for the joint? I can also cross my feet above my head, but not at the same time as binding my fingers. It's one or the other right now. Doing both simultaneously is considered as multi-tasking and too complex for my body/brain to handle.
General body issues - hips often feel over-stretched. Upper back between the shoulder blades are often sore; lower back feels a little lose, like it could use more strengthening. Sinus often feels kind of blocked. Neck always has issues. muscles around elbow area do not like the amount of chaturangas I put them through. Gee, with this much complaints, my non-yogi friends for sure would advise me to stop with all this yoga madness. I'm hoping when I read this entry 6-12 months from now I'll be able to answer all of my own questions and provide better insights into whether or not my body issues have improved.