Going Further Without Going Farther.

Staircases, mountains, long lonely road ahead are common images for progress. Linear images.

Linear progression along a set sequence in Ashtanga is another example. The quintessential next pose defines advancement.

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Āsana Kitchen: Office Yoga

In the previous post, I mentioned that it is better to practice in small segments, but more frequently, especially when we are trying to change old patterns.

Here is a simple practice that can be done at your desk, in your work clothes and does not take more than 7-10 minutes. Aim for once every 1.5 or two hours. (When I was a desk slave at an investment bank, I used to sneak into a conference room and do this routine.) Continue reading

Yoga for Traders

I have a suspicion that Patañjali was a derivatives trader. Yoga seems to have been created specifically for traders. There is much in Yoga that can aid a trader to become better at what he or she does.

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You can find Vinyāsa Yoga on the menu at most Yoga studios. A famous studio that I used to frequent offers Hatha 1, Hatha 2, Vinyāsa 1 and Vinyāsa 2 among other classes. This can be confusing for the beginner. It seems there is more than one way of doing the same Trikonāsana. The Hatha way and the Vinyāsa way.

It is also common to hear the phrase: “take a Vinyāsa now” in Aṣtānga classes as if Vinyāsa is a particular movement or posture.

What exactly is Vinyāsa? Continue reading

Imitation Games

Imitation can be an effective learning method. Dance is a good example. We watch someone dance and we try and move “the same way”. It is also useful in sports, for example, a beginning tennis player may acquire a forehand stroke that does a good job at his level by simply imitating a pro.

We see imitation in other walks of life. Business literature is littered with strategies that urge us to imitate successful people. We are told that successful CEOs or fund managers do these 5 things and that if we do the same 5 things, we could be as successful as them. Of course, the people who did those 5 things and did not make it are harder to find and hence ignored from the calculus. This is an example of survivorship bias or what is less charitably known as “proof by example”. Continue reading

I Want to do Yoga!

I recently taught Yoga to a group of 6 kids at a school for kids with special needs. This was a once a week ‘extra curricular activity’ over the course of a full term. The group had 3 girls and 3 boys, all of them on Autism Spectrum. Some of the mothers attended the class as well, helping the kids follow instructions and practice āsana (postures).

I thoroughly enjoyed teaching the kids and I would look forward to it every week. It was great fun. Kids learnt to chant ‘OM’  and learnt to chant it along with metronomes.

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