Tutorial: Round 9
The first set of this round emphasises on alignment, breath control and endurance. This could possibly be recognised as the most "yogic" section of the class. You may feel very familiar with many of the poses, or it's all new to you. However, by the time that you arrive in this round you will already have learnt a lot about the plank, downwards dog, guard and lunge to mention a few postures. As always, focus on your alignment and maintain a grounded stance. Each time you mov - inhale and each time you want to go deeper in to the posture - exhale. If you like, also set an intention for yourself as you go in to this round. It may be something you want to pay extra attention to like how to engage your muscles without holding unnecessary tension. Or how to stay present in your practice and not let your thoughts wander. Repeat and give yourself a new focus each time.
Practice teaching a friend
We can never go over this sequence too many times. It's complex with a lot of information to remember; the structure of the round as well as its technical aspects.
- Teach it slowly and hold each posture for approximately 3 breaths
- Put two yoga mats in a cross and remember to demonstrate from different angles throughout the round
- Be clear about the alignment cues for each posture - relationship between wrists to elbows, shoulders to knees and feet etc.
- Practice giving target adjustments
- Practice mirroring your student to help them correct their own alignment. This is particularly important in the side angle stretch and the lunging twist.
- Constantly observe your student and give advice and feedback.
The second set
Once you remember the full sequence and you know from which angles to instruct it form, you may still struggle with keeping the flow in the second set. Be patient and keep asking yourself what you are aiming for in the round.
- Set an intention or purpose
- Don't rush the transitions between the postures
- Keep a slow, steady flow and momentum throughout the round
- How do you use your whole body to move into and out from a posture?
- How can you avoid “arriving”, holding or get stuck in a posture?
- Lengthen your body and stretch in oppositions
- Engage your muscles but aim to be relaxed and lose at the same time
- Take the most direct/efficient route from one pose to the other