The Lotus Pose Sequence...(http://vinyasakrama.com/)
In an attempt to practice my newly found padmasana, I took Grimmly's (http://grimmly2007.blogspot.com/) advice, bought Ramaswami's The Complete Book of Vinyasa Krama and tonight I did my first sequence... Well, it wasn't exactly the *whole* sequence, but, seeing as the full padmasana is completely new to me, I took it as far as my body would allow!
I warmed up with 5 sury a's and 5 b's, did the half-lotus subroutine. Kashyapasana is a bitch so had to use both hand on floor to hold me up although I think with time the use of bandha in this posture will reap me benefit. The bound twists (ardha Matsyendrasana) were lovely, really enjoyed those! The counter pose which is like a padmasana-ified purvottanasana (which I hate) I also found very difficult, but with every breath I let gravity do its thing and could feel my hips letting go which in fact ended up feeling great.
This leads to the full lotus posture sequence where I repeated entering padmasana vaying the entering leg, 4 times until my ankles started to really hurt (they're still not sitting *high* on my thighs which I think its the problem here). I had to keep coming out of the posture so missed out the next few postures and went into a forward bend and then utpluthih. By this time my ankles were really aching so changed to a half-lotus version and did some forward bends over each of the lotused thighs. From just doing this sequence my hips felt really loose and I had another go at full lotus which immediately felt better. I then had another mini-triumph and managed baddha padmasana for the first time ever! To finish I did a Matsyasana variation with forearms on the floor and tried to enter upward facing lotus, but as I lifted my hips I could feel a big strain on the ankles, so came out and entered savanasa.
Wow... If there is anything one could practice to deepen their lotus, this is the routine! Beginning to see the benefits of using vinyasa krama as an aid to open certain parts of the body and how this would benefit your ashtanga practice. Sometimes I just don't feel like battering my entire body with ashtanga, but do want to do some form of practice. Recently I've used a bit of yoga nidra instead, but really it's a bit of a cop-out especially when there's actually nothing physical which is stopping me from practicing asana. SO here it is, a new kind of practice which I can fit in around my ashtanga and which I think will open parts of my body which don't get enough attention during my regular ashtanga practice!
PS - Thanks Grimmly!