The Poses of Sisyphus

Dear Yogis

I wonder if your approach to yoga poses changes as much as mine does. My every posture is like a postcard from the past; a chronicle of the journey from impossible or inelegant to not-too-bad. Warrior 2 always reminds me of my original bottom-protruding inelegance. Until I found any height, Hand to Big Toe Posture (B) was five breaths of plummeting dignity. And what about the sheer persecution of hamstring stretches! Shoulder Stand deserves an ‘it’s complicated’ status on Facebook. After years of struggle I found to my surprise and delight the holy grail of surrender and stillness. Things changed after I was in a Hit & Run. Shoulder Stand was as broken as my bike and the uphill climb started again. It’s my Sisyphus pose along with Halasana which is a whole world of frustration.

In a ‘level 2’ class this week the teacher offered various options for poses – as most teachers do – so I did Shoulder Stand against the wall keeping my feet on the wall. Ahhhhh, glory! That’s where the posture is! Another one is Bound Marichyasana C. Why am I struggling to bind when the posture (twisting the spine, calming the mind) happens when I don’t! Ambition o’vaults itself; postures get lost. I’m entering my third decade of yoga and I think light bulbs are only just going on.

Greek Yoga Retreat

There are plenty of places in the retreat for all levels, Sunday September 9th to 16th. All details are on my website including suggested flights. The second retreat is full.

Home Studio

There are plenty of places to book for next week in the Ashtanga-based classes of Wednesday and Thursday. It’s a delight to welcome new people to my joyful Home Studio. The stretchy classes are popular and packed so it’s probably time to add another class. If a Tuesday 6.00pm class suits you, let me know.


Join me in one of these! Next Saturday February 10th, I’ve signed up for Chakrabatics with Stewart Gilchrist at Indaba. The following weekend I’m in Winchester at the Day Christensen workshops. A long way in advance, in April, I’ve signed up for Eddie Stern workshops in Brixton and in May, when summer will be well on the way, I’ve signed up for Kino MacGregor’s workshops. One I haven’t booked yet but looks thoroughly appealing is on February 24th – a workshop in Ealing Triyoga with Zephyr Wildman on the koshas.

Yoga in the News

Frankie McCoy wrote in the Evening Standard about how bad posture, specifically the spine, is at the root of so much of what makes s feel bad. I couldn’t find it online so it is attached. A really good read. (Grateful to Emma Leahy for sending it to me.)

This is an ‘article’ about Yoga for Energy from Inside Time, The National Newspaper for Prisoners and Detainees. It’s not so much an article than a chart of postures. Pretty useful!

If you like podcasts, I’ve been listening to Fit & Fearless on Radio 5 Live. The presenters, Tally, Zanna and Vic, are not so easy on the ear but they are very inspiring and their tips are brilliant. They are completely positive and encouraging about their experiences, mistakes and  successes and, mostly, about lifting weights.

Spine Evening Standard 1.jpg
Spine Evening Standard 2.jpg