Andrea Levy discovers that yoga takes a little longer than a few weeks to perfect
Itâs been a few weeks now that Iâve been attending my beginnerâs yoga course. I was just starting to think I had got the hang of it. The results are there to see: 3lbs lighter (which doesnât sound much, but if Iâm honest, the takeaways washed down with Rioja arenât helping), plus I feel just a bit âlighterâ.
My mother, impressed with the mere fact I have stuck at something for longer than 10 minutes, announced she was going to start coming too. So this week, I marched in, lay my mat down at the front of the hall, and gave her instructions to âfollow my leadâ.
When our instructor Judy walked in and revealed, in an even louder voice, that my usual teacher was off sick this week, and that she would be leading the class, I didnât think it would be a problem.
Â On my mat, breathing deeply, she announced we would begin by gently raising up onto our hands and knees. Giving my mother reassuring nods and winks, I took a deep breath and started into downward dog, confident. I was right: I am a yoga pro, a yogi, a guru perhaps. I have at last stuck with something, I know the moves, Iâm sure I can handle this class.
Â But hang on, why was everyone else doing something different? What had she said? I leapt up onto my feet to try and catch up. âExtended side angle pose,â called Judy. Eh? What was that one? Do we even know that one? âGarland pose, breathing deeply, going straight into the pyramid pose.â WTF?
How did everyone else know these moves and why was she going so fast? I smiled weakly at my mother, and winced at the âpainâ in my back that had just started out of nowhere (ahem). Iâll have to go a little slower, I declared to the rest of the class, not quite so loud, this time. Not that they were listening to me anyway. All deep in meditation, and sailing aimlessly through the poses, with my mum keeping up with ease. Itâs a humbling thing this yoga business.