18 February 2015

New Mexico {50 States of Yoga}

Aztec, NM

Northwestern New Mexico, as you might imagine, looks a lot like Northeastern Arizona.  So I was blessed again with vistas abundant in sandstone monuments and red rock mesas.  It took but a few hours to drive from Durango to Albuquerque down highway 550.  I drove through a smattering of Reservations - Zia, Jemez, Sandia, and more.  There were oil rigs scattered on the landscape here and there.  I wondered if the Native Americans were making money off of them - or if some corporations had found a loophole.  I did see a Haliburton truck.  Which means nothing specifically - just an observation.  I also thought that this would be a great place for solar farms.  Maybe the Natives could sell solar energy?  I don't know... I just had a lot of rambling ideas and questions.  Maybe I'll look more into it one day.

Entering Albuquerque, I had plenty of time to check into my hotel.  I re-packed my suitcase for travel the next morning, ironed my travel clothes, and finished off that box of pizza from Durango.  My class was at 8pm in downtown Albuquerque.  I asked the front desk if stuff would still be open (at now 6:30p) and she said yes - so I headed into the city.  And nothing was open.  Well, the restaurants and bars were open.  But I didn't want to eat before class and I don't drink - so, nothing's open.  Which was slightly disappointing.  There were stores and museums that I would have loved to poke my head into.  How can a city be closed down so early?  Oh well.  I roamed a few blocks and took a few photos trying to kill some time.

Albuquerque, NM

At quarter till 8 I went to Sani Yoga.  Sani Yoga's mission is to make yoga affordable and accessible to all.  I like that.  All of their classes are $5.  The space is humble, yet inviting.  One wall is painted in chalkboard paint with loads of lovely information and art drawn on it.  A calendar of events.  A drawing of the chakras.  A giant Ganesha - with a message, Happy Birthday Ganesha!  {I had no idea Ganesha had a birthday!  How exciting!}  My teacher was Kristiana for Candlelight Yoga.  In my mind... candlelight yoga is all savasana all the time.  Haha...  That is not what it actually is though.  In fact, I was sweating more in this class than any other on this trip! 

I learned quite a bit from Kristiana.  At one point she had us in pigeon pose.  I had never done pigeon pose before and my hips just weren't having it.  I tend to not speak up in class when I can't do something... I just modify it to fit my ability.  But there is no modified pigeon - that I was aware of - so I just sat there, cross legged, waiting for the next move.  Kristiana saw me and rescued me.  She suggested I fold my blanket under my hips while in the pose - to support my hips.  I did.  And it worked!  And then dawn hit marblehead.  Props!  I started to become more aware of poses that I wasn't quite there with and began to use the blanket and blocks to aid me!  Yeah!  I felt pretty good about this.  {In fact, this morning at home during a video yoga class the teacher went into pigeon and I followed along...  with my blanket!}


Another couple of poses that I enjoyed were standing/wall modifications of downward dog.  We used the wall under our hands like it was the floor... and kept our feet on the floor.  I'm certain I'm not explaining it well enough to understand - but what it did for me was great.  I have a had time doing plank, down dog, etc because of my wrists.  By doing them against the wall I was able to feel other muscles working - without the stress on my wrists.  Awesome!  This is something I will play around with more during my home practice.

After class I went back to my hotel and straight to bed.  I was up early the next morning to catch my flight back to SFO.  And not a moment too soon!  Local news said Durango was going to get up to a foot of snow... and it was already cold in Albuquerque... 29 degrees!  The rest of the country can keep their cold weather... I'm typing this as we have record highs here in Northern California.  And I'm quite okay with that!

A side note...  I am starting to notice little bits and pieces of yoga classes that are localized.  I mentioned on my last trip that scents were used in 3 of the 4 classes on the Gulf Coast.  Something I definitely wasn't used to here in NorCal - where they are very sensitive to the needs of everyone - including those with allergies.  I noticed on this trip the Southwest has a cleanliness thing.  At 2 of the 3 studios after using the studio mats {I haven't been bringing my own mat} they ask you to clean off your mat with a spray and towel.  It makes sense.  And honestly, I'm surprised that we don't do that here in Northern California!

8 states done so far.  It has been a very interesting journey for me.  I can't wait to get back on the road!

Please see the other states from this adventure...
...and you can see all my 50 States of Yoga adventures here.

No comments:

Post a Comment