Lightbulb moment

I take a class on Monday nights with a teacher whom I adore. There’s a defining moment every week when my teacher asks “what would you like to work on today?” and I decide if I should speak up or shut up.

Inversions and backbends are what I need the most guidance with, but I try not to be selfish with my teacher’s time. I know other people need her, too. I don’t want to be that annoying girl who always requests the hard stuff.

So I only speak up about once a month, and this week I requested an inversion. She took us into headstand, and while we were there…a fellow yogini asked about handstand.

WHOA. Did that just happen? I would never have the guts to bring up handstand, assuming that the rest of the class would run crying from the room and my teacher would hate me forever.

Well, people didn’t exactly jump right into handstand, but no one ran out of class in tears, either. And my teacher showed us this:

Why have I never thought of this before? You start in a forward fold, back of your legs to the wall, and walk your feet up the wall. What a great way to test the strength in your arms. I was stuck in my own little box thinking that I had to have my back to the wall and kick up, like I do with headstand, and this little gem was there all along.

Oh the joy a good teacher brings to your life!



10 responses to “Lightbulb moment

  1. awesome idea! I’ll have to remember that down the road. first, must master crow and then headstand :-P

  2. Nice one Jamie!! I’ve heard this called “L Pose” and it’s an awesome way to work on arm strength and balance. Funnily enough I actually find it harder than handstand (against the wall)! You are rocking it in the photo though!

  3. I learned this long ago and then, apparently, forgot! Thanks for the great reminder.

    I must tell you, your post awhile back about headstand inspired me. Last week during a home practice, I decided to try headstand against the wall, and I did it! It took several tries, but I got my legs up there and even brought them away from the wall for a bit. Then I did some forearm stands the same way (less successfully). I was so excited that I was sitting on the floor all by myself grinning from ear to ear. Thanks :)

  4. This is how I learned handstand. Awesome isn’t it!

  5. Your blog has the best pictures.

  6. This is how I do handstand, when I do it I mean, which is *ahem* not often, and seeing this picture has made me want to do it right now (right after lunch, don’t think it would be very wise…) .
    Thanks for the reminder!

  7. i find that doing this, with the legs parallel to the floor, is the most ridiculous arm strengthener. try to stay up there a full minute… oy.

    as a teacher, i am always asking what people want to work on, and am very rarely getting a response. i love it when people actually do; it makes going through the class much easier. huzzah for speaking up!

  8. This is a scary way to do handstand- I have a friend who just can’t get past the mental block of walking her feet up against the wall….

    but then I think all handstands are scary lol. my favourite way is to donkey kick up with someone supporting me- fist between ankles.

    awesome photo!!

  9. Tiffany- So happy I inspired someone. I love inversion : )
    Kate- you can thank my patient husband for that!

    Those of you who think this is scarier than kicking up into a handstand- for the record, I think you’re crazy. I have never even attempted kicking up into a handstand because I’m too afraid to. That moment “in flight” where I don’t know if my heels are going to hit the wall or not is just too much for me right now. This approach is so much easier for me because I have constant contact with the wall with at least one foot. I love it!

  10. Awesome blog – just found it!

    I am working on this one too and have a deep fear of being upsidedown. Did she show you how to measure how far away from the wall to put your hands to get in L shape? (in case not, you sit with butt to the wall and where your ankles are should basically be where your hands go).

    Great picture!

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