Everyone has poses that come easy (or easier) and those that are a real struggle. For example, I could do fixed firm pose, leaning all the way back, fairly quickly in my practice, however there are more than a handful of poses I really struggle with.
As a newbie, and someone who is not flexible (years of running partially to blame I think), there are some asanas that I have to smile and keep struggling with.
1. It starts early for me, one of the warm up poses in half moon, where you place your hands under your ankles…uhh… no. My hands literally cannot go behind me. I put them on the sides of my feet more than under my ankles… bending my knees doesn’t seem to matter, I just seem to really have a hard time and my shoulders seem to stay put, not willing to even remotely move behind my knees.
2. Next eagle pose. My foot is stubborn and refuses to wrap around my other leg. I squeeze tightly and hope I’m getting the benefit, however my foot stays outside the other leg, not behind it. I attribute this (Rightly or wrongly, more wrongly I suspect) to 2 potential things: I’m very short and I’m plump. There’s a few poses I’ve found where carrying some extra weight makes the pose more challenging. This is one of them.
3. Standing Head to Knee. OK, This is a hard one for many. For 6 months, I could not pick up my leg at all. I’d stay in the first part of the posture of locking my standing leg. Overall, this seemed to be the only posture I felt I was making no progress. I could not wrap my hands (fingers entwined no less) under either leg. I’d see people in their first class do it and I just wanted my arms to be 6 inches longer! Here’s where weight comes into place as well. I think my stomach and chest gets in the way when I lean forward making this posture harder. I have made progress on this though.
4. Separate Standing Leg Head to Knee Pose: This is the one where the posture only starts when your head touches your knee and it’s ok to bend your leg. Well, I bend and my head has never touched my knee. This may be my second most frustrating posture.
5. Wind Removing Pose. The third part of this pose involves lifting both knees up and wrapping your arms together, grabbing your opposite elbows. Well, my fingers clasp here. Again I think I can blame my stomach mostly, although my back way be very tight (making my dream pose-Full Camel even trickier-see post below)
6. Locust Pose. My legs feel like they barely move here when I try to lift them both up simultaneously. I struggle here both to do the posture correctly and to make progress.
I try hard not to get negative with myself or frustrated during these postures. It does happen I have to confess, however, I look forward to getting better, moving forward and making progress. Namaste.