Clean and Elegant

Clean and Elegant

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Yoga for Core Strength

Some yoga classes are total nightmares.  Last night in my dream I was teaching “Yoga for Core Strength” at the local studio.  There were almost twenty people there.  We kept trying to set up but a bunch of chairs and couches would keep appearing and getting in the way.  I would get everyone to help me move them and then lo and behold, the chairs and the couches would emerge again.  Finally a big enough space cleared out and the mysterious chairs and couches relented into a faraway void.  I tried to get everyone to arrange themselves in a semi-circle except it didn’t work because they wouldn’t stop talking.  They were waving their arms around in circles and yelling at each other and laughing.

“Everyone, get down on your hands and knees,” I hollered.  Finally they did, but some of them turned themselves backwards so that their butts were in my face.  I decided to go on with the class anyways.  Although I am an Ashtanga Fundamentalist, I had prepared a non-ashtanga fundamentalist superior and excellent warm-up sequence.
Actually, I had stolen it from my Ashtanga Heroine Kino MacGregor’s youtube clip. This is it.

The first step was getting everyone into a tabletop position and making sure they established a firm and solid foundation. 

“Press into your knuckles,” I called out to the crowd of faces and asses.  “Foundation!  Knuckles, fingertips, heel of the hand.”  I have heard Kino MacGregor call out similar commands, and I felt good about what I was saying.  Then I noticed that one girl didn’t have any knuckles.  She didn’t even have hands.  In fact, she didn’t have forearms either.  Or elbows.  Her arms ended just above her elbows.  I crawled over to her to see if maybe I could get her to lean forwards and connect the ends of her arms onto the floor.  If that didn’t work, maybe I could look for blocks or a small bench.  Despite being an Ashtanga Fundamentalist, I was willing and prepared to make the practice accessible to my student with no arms.  When I got to her, I would tell her to protract her shoulders, draw her ribs in, suck in the region below her navel, keep her pelvis elevated.  The hell with her missing arms.  Everyone can take practice!  Then I got closer and I saw that the space between her ribs and her pelvis was empty.  She was missing at least ten ribs, and all of her rectus and transverse abdominals.  Probably a spleen, pancreas, appendix, and various intestines too. 
Terrified, I woke up next to the Boatman, feeling entirely incompetent about the “Core Strength Yoga” class I will now be teaching on Wednesday afternoons. 

This morning, despite it being Saturday, and despite me being an Ashtanga Fundamentalist, I spent an hour and a half doing all the Kino Yoga core strength exercises and sequences I could think of without dying.  I almost puked on five occasions.  It was absolutely horrendous.

Hope to see you at Core Strength Yoga next Wednesday at 4:45.
Remember that tomorrow is the Second Annual International Mammal Day.  To celebrate, the Boatman and I will be doing International Mammal Things like eating and drinking snacks and licking each other and ourselves, and clipping the hedge.


Me and the Hedgeclipper on International Mammal day.
Probably everyone is tired of this photo of me clipping the hedge, but everyone can rejoice because tomorrow we will take our second annual photo.  Stay tuned. 

You can celebrate International Mammal Day from anywhere in the world and I urge you to do so.  If you have a hedge to clip, you can warm up with core strength exercises, like the ones above, or the ones below.

Kino rocking core strength in Navasana + a variation.

If you need more motivation, I recommend buying the shorts:

Now it is 2016. Kino has moved on to loud exciting tights.
Sometimes buying things is good for core strength.  And sometimes it isn't.
Good luck with your hedge!
The End.
The Power of my Pelvis:  @mypelvicfloor
My Source of Self-Esteem and Core Strength:  Likes on Facebook
My Source of Sadness and Grief:  Nobody has bought my self-help book for centuries.



  1. I will be there with arms, ribs, area below the ribs, and intestines in tact :)

  2. hahahaha this is hilarious. but i am sad you had such a scary dream! sadly, i work too late most days to make it to your core strength class... but i'm gonna see what i can do- i LOVED your lunch class :)
    also- i'm not sure about those shorts... :S