Thursday, December 1, 2011

More on backbends; a couple of ideas on making a lot of money in the yoga world

Practice this morning was good. I decided to work more on backbends. In many ways, this wasn't a very deliberate decision on my part. Ever since my left knee fell out of favor with the Ashtanga gods, I have more or less unconsciously been looking for other things to work on in my practice; things that don't involve going into padmasana or doing fancy stuff with the knees. Here's another way to think about this: If you think of the effort and energy that you put into your practice as a laser beam, when you take the beam off one area of the practice, you more or less naturally end up refocusing the beam on some other area of your practice. Somehow, without quite being aware of it, my "laser beam" has refocused on back-bending in the last two or three weeks.

For one, over the last two or three weeks, I have been putting in more effort and intention in working on the second series backbends. In my view, backbends are not so much about working harder as they are about working with more intention, trying to see if I can breathe deeper and more evenly in them. This morning, for instance, I felt that my breathing in Laghu Vajrasana was deeper and more even than it usually is. I also had an interesting breakthrough in Kapotasana. As usual, I started by getting on my knees and hanging back to open my chest before diving for my feet. When I dove this morning, my right hand found my heel immediately! Which was a nice surprise; up till now, I always had to land either on my toes or my mid-sole, then walk the couple of inches to the heels.

In the dropbacks, I worked on doing two or three hangbacks before actually dropping back. I succeeded in extending my arms towards the ground during the hangbacks, so that my fingertips were suspended just a few inches off the ground. When I finally dropped to the ground, I touched my heels with my fingers, but still couldn't get into Chakrabandhasana. Will keep working on this.


You have to admit that it is not easy making a living as a yoga teacher these days. With all these teacher training programs churning out armies of RYTs everyday, a yoga teacher who aspires to the heights of yoga rock-star-dom definitely has the odds stacked against him or her. Fortunately, recent developments in the yoga world offer us a couple of good ideas to beat these odds:

(1) Get in touch with an up-and-coming reality TV show participant, and offer to produce and star in a naked yoga production with him or her. You can't ask Kim Kardashian, though; she's already been there, done that. (I'm not linking to that infamous video here, but it's probably on, like, a million blogs and websites by now, so you should have no trouble finding it if you need, uh, inspiration.)

The nice thing about this project is you don't need much start-up capital. All you need is a video-camera, a couple of yoga mats, and your (and your reality TV show participant's) naked body. It doesn't matter if all you have is a hand-held camera; the hand-held effect will give an authentic, on-the-spot feel to your production.

The drawback to this project is that you have to be able to bear seeing yourself naked onscreen... Well, actually, it's probably more correct to say that you have to have a body that you think others will be able to bear seeing naked onscreen. Do you have such a body? Well, there's only one way to find out...

(2) If you are not into exposing yourself, you can try selling merchandise. In his recent post, Kevin writes about this back-bending tool that his friend's landlord has made over in Mysore. It's supposed to be really helpful for deepening your backbend, especially Kapotasana. Here's how it looks like:

  Image taken from Kevin's blog

I have this feeling that this back-bending tool--let's call it the BackbendiMatrix--is just waiting for somebody with an enterpreneurial spirit to take it, patent it, and make millions selling it to Ashtangis who are struggling with Kapotasana. Besides making a lot of money, you will also gain the universal unqualified gratitude of millions of Ashtangis worldwide. That's quite a bit of good karma, don't you think? 

But of course, do remember to give Kevin's friend's landlord in Mysore a fair share of the millions that you will be making (remember Asteya, or non-stealing) from the BackbendiMatrix.

Well, these are a couple of money-making ideas that I have. If you want more ideas, check out sereneflavor's latest post.

You may be wondering: Since you have all these great money-making ideas, why aren't you using them to get rich? Well, for one, I really don't have a body that you can bear seeing naked onscreen (trust me, I know...). As for the BackbendiMatrix... ha! Maybe I need to make a trip to Mysore soon...

1 comment:

  1. Mysore Yoga Back Bender On Sale now! Took a few months but here it is the BackbendiMatrix by another name....