Friday, September 21, 2012

Friday Focus: Mysore Etiquette

Mysore Etiquette by Cara Jepsen / Kali Om, for tomorrow's Mysore 101 workshop at Yoga Now

Mysore Etiquette

You may arrive and leave at any time during the class

Enter and leave quietly. Try to place your mat without too much drama

For best results, come at least three times a week

Let the teacher know about any injury or condition you have

Once you get on your mat, stay. Take care of bathroom duties before class

Stop when/where the teacher asks you to stop

Do not drink water, as this destroys the internal purifying heat. Traditionally, no water is taken 20 minutes before or after practice, either

It’s OK to ask questions or wait for an adjustment. Just try to keep the volume low

Try to use ujjayi breath, dristi (gaze), vinyasa and bandhas as you practice

Do Primary Series the first time you practice in a new place / with a new teacher, or after travel

Traditionally, practice is not done on the new and full moon and ladies do not practice for three days during their cycle

If pressed for time, tell the teacher. In general, the sun salutations, standing poses and closing poses are most important. Do not skip the poses you don’t like.

Learn everything you can about the pose you’re working on, such as its name and meaning. Look up others doing the pose, and try to learn from them. You may do your “nemesis” pose three times in class, or hold it for a long time.

Every pose has a correct vinyasa – a specific way to enter and exit. When in doubt, ask

Those who sweat a lot should bring two towels – one for you and one for the teacher

Practice saucha (cleanliness) on your person and your clothes, mat, towel, etc.

Try not to come to class reeking of garlic, onions or meat. Yogis historically do not consume these items. A sattvic (mild) vegetarian diet is traditional, and yields the best results

Remember the words of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois: “Ashtanga is 99 percent practice, one percent theory” and “Do you practice and all is coming.” And keep in mind that the three greatest obstacles to practice are sleep, laziness and disease.

Text (c) 2012 by Kali Om. Photo (c) 2002 by Cara Jepsen

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