Friday, March 11, 2005

Yoga: the ultimate masochistic activity

One of the nice benefits at the Trend Micro Taiwan office is yoga lessons. Every day during lunch hours a yoga teacher comes in and we stretch, pull, and push for about an hour and a half. In addition to the teacher, they also renovated a room and added mirrors and bars (for you TW BU trenders it's on the 9th floor, as enter, take a left).

It dawned on me sometime ago that yoga is the ultimate masochistic activity. No matter how good you get, you can always stetch a bit further. No matter how flexible you become, there will still be positions that let you discover your unflexible areas. Being a naturally unflexible person (physically, not personality wise), it's doubly worse for me.

I have been a yoga club member for around a year, attending off and on (the previous few months more off than on). I used to try and convince others to go with the following reasons (but gave up): good for your body (especially considering we hunch over keyboards all day), super convenient (take an elevator and you're there), and free, free, free (as in no money down, no monthly installments). Just show up with sweats and a towel and you're good to stretch.

Lately I've been attending more (new year's resolution kicking in) and this week attended the maximum number of classes for men (Mon, Wed, Fri; Tues and Thurs women only please).

There is one stretch where we sit on the floor with our legs spread and our hands splayed in front of us, head up. The teacher comes by and pushes on your back to help you stretch in one of two ways: 1. hops on your back and bounces up and down pushing with her knees (the nice way) or 2. supports herself with her back to the wall and drives down with her feet on your back (the not-so-nice way).

Usually the teacher is good at judging how much force to exert, but today perhaps because I had gone 3 times this week, she used the #2 way to push my back and after a couple good lunges (picture kickstarting an oversized Harley with 2 legs) a loud "POP" sound came from the area of my hip flexor rotator something or other. Ouch...

Now I get up and sit down like I'm in the latter part of my golden years. Where's my Ben Gay?


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