Deconstructing Lolasana

Some poses come easily for some of us and other asanas are difficult.  We all have poses that we think we will never be able to do in a million years!!  However, I disagree with this thinking.  The beauty of having a regular home practice means that you can 'study' the asana that is your most difficult, instead of avoiding it.  Below is my example of breaking down and studying a difficult pose.  This method can be applied to any pose.

Lolasana - the mother of all poses! - and I don't mean that in a nice way!!

Lolasana is a pose that has always eluded me.  My issue was that I couldn't seem to get my brain around what was actually required.  Because I couldn't understand Lolasana academically I didn't have a way of translating the 'thinking' of the pose to the 'doing' of the pose.  I came across an excellent article by Richard Rosen which has allowed me to find a path to understand and practice the pose.  At Teacher's Practice last Friday we followed his reasoning and we all commented on how useful this was.  I hope the following will help you to understand Lolasana too, when you are ready to take it on.  

Breaking down or deconstructing Lolasana, or any asana, is a great way to practice.

Benefits of the Pose

Strengthens wrists, tones arms, develops abdominal muscles and strengthens back muscles.

Contraindications

Wrist injuries, shoulder pain or serious neck issues.

Round the Torso

Start on the hands and knees with your knees below the hips.  Place your hands a few centimetres in front of your shoulders, spread your palms and press the mounds of your index fingers to the floor.  On an exhalation press your tailbone down toward the floor and forward toward your pubic bone and round your back up toward the ceiling to create an arch.  Let your head hang to release the back of your neck and lengthen as much as possible between the tip of your coccyx and the base of your skull.  

Spread your shoulder blades as far away from your spine as possible, as if you're wrapping them around the sides of your torso.  Counter this outward movement by hugging the outer arms inward, as if you were squeezing the arms together.  Combining these two actions helps to round your back and strengthen your arms.  Your back torso will form a lovely arch (in a perfect world)!  In a perfect world the space between the shoulder blades should lift, instead of sinking to the floor.

The Arms

As per the energy channels that yogis mapped out thousands of years ago, the outer arm channel runs from the shoulder to the little finger (down the outer arm), while the inner channel runs from the base of the index finger up to the shoulder (up the inner arm).  On your hands and knees again, round your back by spreading the scapulas into the resistance of the outer arms from shoulder to floor.  Then, the counter action is from the mound of the index finger to the shoulder.  Feel how the outer arm channel anchors you to the floor (creating an earth element in the pose) and the inner arm channel lifts you toward the ceiling.  Hold this circuit for a few breaths then release back to a neutral position.  Repeat a few times.

The Belly

The belly is the final part of the jigsaw. On your hands and knees again in a table top position, round your back again but now lift the navel towards your spine and reduce the space between your pubis and sternum.  Counter the lift of your navel by pressing your index finger mounds into the floor.  Hold for 15-30 seconds, then release and take a few breaths.

Putting it Together

Use blocks under the hands (as per the image from our Friday Teachers' Practice).  Kneel with your thighs and torso perpendicular to the floor and hands on blocks beside the hips.  Cross your right ankle under your left, sit your buttocks back on your left heel - warming:  this is not pleasant.  

Press your hands to the blocks and on an inhalation, lengthen your front torso.  On an exhalation, round up your torso, lift your knees away from the floor but keep your feet on the ground.   Work on all of the points for the belly, arms, scapulas and hands.   This is the first step.  Hold for 15-30 seconds.  Repeat on the other side.

The next stage is to do what you just did but this time lift the shins away from the floor as your lift your knees on an exhalation.  Lastly, with the right ankle below the left, lift your left knee off the floor, then when you exhale into your round ball, push that knee downward, using the right ankle as a fulcrum, and squeeze your right shin firmly up.  The left leg will act like a lever to lift the ball of your body away from the floor.  Hold for as long as you can then reverse and do on the other side.  When finished, sit back on the heels with a straight spine for a few breaths.

As Richard Rosen quotes in his article on Lolasana, 'Remember what Krishna tells Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita:  On this path no effort is wasted, no gain is ever reversed'.  Level 2 students will particularly appreciate that quote as they have been studying the Gita.

Other articles:

Term 1 2024 Timetable

Welcome to a new year of yoga!  Term 1 is an 11 week term and starts on Monday 29 January.  Please note there are no classes in the week commencing Monday 22 April due to teachers undertaking Professional Development in Canberra.

We have a great year planned and I am working on locking in some workshops with guest teachers, as well as the usual workshops I teach in the studio on a regular basis.  Here is an outline of what's to come:

  • Lulu Bull is returning for a weekend workshop in September/October;
  • We are planning to celebrate International Yoga Day on 21 June with a class, soup and a film night;
  • We are holding Yoga classes for Children and Young Adults on the second Saturday of each month starting on 10 February at 9.30am; 
  • I will teach the Home Practice Workshop on Saturday 24 February from 2.00-5.00pm;
  • Fiona is again teaching an 8 week Pranayama Practice session each Friday at 6.45am from 2 February, in the studio and online;
  • and lots more.

 

We are a small studio and offer high quality classes with attention to detail.  We focus on teaching our students in a wholistic and comprehensive manner.  We can only continue to offer this high standard of classes and workshops with your support.  We look forward to teaching you again in 2024 to support your yoga practice and overall health and wellbeing.

 

The Timetable is as follows and booking are now open:

 

Monday 6.00-7.30pm - Experienced Class with Tricia

Tuesday 6.15-7.15pm - Beginner Class with Tricia

Wednesday 6.30-7.30am - Led Practice Online with Kim

Wednesday 9.30-10.45am - Gentle Class with Tricia

Wednesday 5.45-7.15pm - Intermediate Class with Fiona

Thursday 9.30-11.00am - General Class with Tricia

Thursday 5.45-6.45pm - Beginner Class with Kim

Saturday 7.30-8.30am - Rise & Shine General Class with Kim.

 

See you on the mat!  Use the link below to book from the schedule.

https://orangeyogaroom.com.au/pages/timetable

January Holiday Timetable 2024

The studio will be closed from Saturday 23 December until Monday 15 January.  We have casual classes on the timetable from 15 January until we resume with a full timetable on Monday 29 January 2024 - see below.

Monday 15 January

6.00-7.30pm Open Class with Tricia
 

Wednesday 17 January

6.30-7.30am – Led Practice with Kim (online only)

6.00-7.30pm General class with Tricia

 Thursday 18 January

9.30-11.00am General Class with Kim

9.30-3.00pm - Children and Young Adult's Yoga at the Library

Intensive 

Friday 19, Saturday 20, Sunday 21, and Monday 22 January 2024

I love, love, love teaching the Intensive each year.  The New Year is an opportunity to start with a clean slate, to set goals and to move forward in a way that's free of the past.  There is a freshness and a lightness to the New Year which is well suited to the mindset of Intensives.  Intensives are designed to focus your awareness on your yoga practice in a way that you wouldn't necessarily do by simply coming to class each week.  We can look more deeply into different aspects of asana and pranayama as well as restorative asanas.  It can give students clarity and insight into their practice and allows us to start the New Year with energy and positivity.  The Intensive is open to all students who have a solid foundation in basic standing poses, shoulder stand and halasana.  As numbers are limited, priority will be given to students who attend all 7 sessions.  There are options for 5 and 6 sessions but it is preferable to do the whole Intensive.   I will consider taking 4 session bookings if we have places available closer to the time.


Dates and Times:

Friday 19 January - 6.00-7.30pm
Saturday 20 January - 8.30-10.30am and 4.00-5.30pm
Sunday 21 January - 8.30-10.30am and 4.00-5.30pm
Monday 6.30-8.00am and 6.00-7.30pm.


Investment

7 sessions - $280.00
6 sessions - $260.00
5 sessions - $240.00.

Book all 7 sessions on the link below.  If you wish to book 5 or 6 sessions, please place your name on the list at the studio and pay a deposit of $50 which is nontransferable and nonrefundable.

Wednesday 24 January

9.30-10.45am General Class with Tricia

 

Saturday 27 January

7.30-8.30am General class with Kim

3.30-4.30 pm Yoga Basics for those wanting to start Yoga

 

Monday 29 January

Regular Timetable and Term 1 starts.

Book Intensive:  https://orangeyogaroom.punchpass.com/classes/14251558

 

What's Happening up until Christmas

Friday 1 December at the Studio

Free Christmas Class 5.45pm

Gathering 6.45pm

As usual, we will get together as a community for a free class and nibblies to celebrate the end of another year of learning and practising yoga together.  Please come along to the class, or pop your head in the door and say hello when the class finishes.

5.45-6.45pm - Free class (please book your place)
6.45-7.45pm - Catch up for a chat and nibblies.

If possible, can you please book online for this free class.  Please remember to cancel your attendance if you can't be there on the night.  There will also be a list at the studio for those who don't use online bookings.  If you are able to bring a small plate to share after the class, that would be wonderful, but not necessary.

Fiona, Kim and I would love to see as many students there as possible.

Book Christmas Class:  https://orangeyogaroom.punchpass.com/classes/14251824

Classes 18-23 December

Term 4 finishes officially on Saturday 16 December.  However, I will teach a few Restorative Classes during the week leading up to Christmas.  All classes will be focused on relieving stress, taking time out to breathe, moving slowly and steadily, and staying grounded.  Here are the dates. Please look carefully at the times:

Monday 18 December 6.00-7.30pm 

Tuesday 19 December 6.15-7.30pm

Wednesday 20 December 6.00-7.30pm (tbc)

Thursday 21 December  9.30-11.00am.

Book as usual with your pass or purchase a casual pass to attend.  All students welcome.  

The studio will be closed until Monday 15 January.  We will have casual classes on the timetable for two weeks until we resume with a full timetable on Monday 29 January 2024.

Please note that all passes expire on 22 December 2023.  We will start with new passes and a clean slate in 2024.

 

January Intensive

Friday 19, Saturday 20, Sunday 21, and

Monday 22 January 2024

I love, love, love teaching the Intensive each year.  The New Year is an opportunity to start with a clean slate, to set goals and to move forward in a way that's free of the past.  There is a freshness and a lightness to the New Year which is well suited to the mindset of Intensives.  Intensives are designed to focus your awareness on your yoga practice in a way that you wouldn't necessarily do by simply coming to class each week.  We can look more deeply into different aspects of asana and pranayama as well as restorative asanas.  It can give students clarity and insight into their practice and allows us to start the New Year with energy and positivity.  The Intensive is open to all students who have a solid foundation in basic standing poses, shoulder stand and halasana.  As numbers are limited, priority will be given to students who attend all 7 sessions.  There are options for 5 and 6 sessions but it is preferable to do the whole Intensive.   I will consider taking 4 session bookings if we have places available closer to the time.


Dates and Times:

Friday 19 January - 5.45-7.15pm
Saturday 20 January - 8.30-10.30am and 4.30-6.00pm
Sunday 21 January - 8.30-10.30am and 4.30-6.00pm
Monday 6.30-8.00am and 5.45-7.15pm.


Investment

7 sessions - $280.00
6 sessions - $260.00
5 sessions - $240.00.

Book all 7 sessions on the link below.  If you wish to book 5 or 6 sessions, please place your name on the list at the studio and pay a deposit of $40 which is nontransferable and nonrefundable.

Book 7 Sessions of Intensive:  https://orangeyogaroom.punchpass.com/classes/14251558.

 

 



 

Holiday Timetable - 25 September-8 October

Hello everyone,

The last class for Term 3 is Saturday 23 September.  From Monday 25 September we will be on a holiday timetable for two weeks.  All classes are open classes so any student can attend and we encourage everyone to come along to whatever class suits over that two week period of time.  You can purchase a casual pass or use your existing pass or membership.  The classes are:


Monday 25 Sept 6.00-7.30pm - Open Class with Tricia
Tuesday 26 Sept 6.45-7.03am - Pranayama Intensive with Fiona
 
Tuesday 26 Sept 6.00-7.00pm - Open Class with Kim
Wednesday 27 September 6.45-7.30am - Pranayama Intensive with Fiona
Wednesday 27 Sept 6.00-7.30pm - Open class with Kim
Thursday 28 September 6.45-7.30am - Pranayama Intensive 
Saturday 30 Sept 7.30-8.30am - Open Class with Kim.


Tuesday 3 October 6.00-7.00pm - Open class with Kim
Wednesday 4 October 9.30-10.45am - Open Class with Tricia
Wednesday 4 October 6.00-7.30pm - Open class with Kim
Thursday 5 October 9.30-11.00am - Open class with Tricia
Saturday 7 October 7.30-8.30am - Open class with Kim.

Sunday 8 October - Kids Classes with craft, bath bombs and lip balm.
9.00am-10.00am - 3-6yrs
10.15-11.45 - 7-11yrs
12.00-1.30pm - 12yrs+.

Term 4 starts on Monday 9 October.  

Please be aware that passes have an expiry date so Log into your account and check to make sure you attend all classes on the pass.  Classes can be booked and cancelled up to 1 hour before the class starts.

See you on the mat,

Tricia

 

 

 

 

Why have a Home Practice?

'Home Practice' means you start practising a little of what you have learnt in class in your own time at home.  There are many reasons to develop a home practice, and also many benefits.  

Yoga is a practice-based form of learning.  We come to class each week and learn as a group.  Just like you need to train if you play a sport, ie football or netball,  in Yoga you need to train or practice during the week so that when you come to class, you can apply what you have practised.  This is the way we progress and develop our yoga practice.  

Having a yoga practice requires a certain amount of discipline, there's no doubt. But what it really requires is consistency.  The act of stepping onto the mat once, twice or three times a week means you create a space from which to observe what is happening in your life, and your reactions to it.  To sit with sensations, emotions and whatever else rises up in the stillness of practice, is sometimes difficult.  If you remain curious instead of judgemental, you can create a space that is welcoming, familiar and almost like a haven.  It is a space for learning - some days things go well, and other days things are challenging.   Some days you need to do active asanas to work out tension, and other days you are so exhausted or anxious that restorative asanas are required to sooth the nerves and revitalise your energy.

The beauty of having a home practice is that you can practise what you need on the day.  Practice becomes a valuable part of your life where you can be still, learn, energise an recalibrate.  This first step to creating a home practice is knowledge, but then you have to apply the knowledge and step onto the mat.  In the workshop we look at obstacles to practice, how to prioritise practice and what to practice.  We look at categories of poses, how to sequence poses to gain different effects, how to enliven the body, and how to soothe the nervous system.  It is practical as well as looking at some basic theory. It is suitable for all levels and invaluable to all yoga practitioners.  If you would like to join me, please use the link below to book, or email me.  You will be very welcome.

Date:  Saturday 19 August
Time:  1.30-4.30 pm
Investment:  $50.00.

 https://orangeyogaroom.punchpass.com/classes/13620674

 

Yoga for Children - Thursday 13 July

We love teaching yoga to children and it's a perfect school holiday activity that is fun and educational.  Through story and imagination the children will learn how to balance, focus, move with awareness and be still and relax.

This week we have two classes running at the studio:

3-6yrs 9.00am

7-12yrs 10.00am.

We would love to share these skills and have some fun with your children.  Use the booking link below or contact me with any questions.

Tricia