Moving over rock and finding that rock warriors way inside must be the ultimate goal for every climber. Being free from fears, pride, expectations and demands and only climb intuitively.. Well, if it only was as easy as saying so!! I have a annoying tendency to get really hung up on details when I climb rope, never as much when I do bouldering for some reason. One theory is that I believe that it is held in higher esteem to climb well on rope, as if making that perfect ascent in good style would give me a raise or maybe even develop me as a person right there in the gym. We all know that is not really how the world works.. It is harder than that to be complete and peaceful.
A couple of years back I did ashtanga yoga 4-5 days a week, not necessarily to become more flexible but in search of a greater peace of mind. To burn through the obstacles of my psychology and reach a state of acceptance, and it worked well. I felt better and more relaxed than ever, working my way through old pains and regrets towards a more smooth rhythm in my life. And then I stopped.. I never really figured out why because it was something I sort of promised myself I would keep doing. I had a very unique teacher and did my practice in a traditional manner which is hard to find these days in a community where everything is about making money on expensive courses and fancy #yogagyms”. My shala (or room where you perform the practice) was smelly, rugged, basement like and full of love! I absolutely fell in love with it and the people who met me there day in and day out. I miss it and can only hope to find the time again in the future..
Now when I do some stretching after climbing or lifting I tend to feel stiff, short of breath and uncomfortable. And I don’t do any of the soothing breathing that is a foundation in yoga. I have become stronger but also tighter and more bulky, something my yoga teacher would try hard to get me away from. But still I find the doorway to that peace of mind I once got closer to through my practice two years back, just by stretching and stopping for a couple of minutes. It’s maybe easier than I think, to return to the shala? At least I know I would be welcome back and my body would welcome it back.