Sunday, January 21, 2007

There Are No Prizes in Yoga (or Motherhood)

yogapretzel

My friend Todd called me a "show off" in yoga class this morning when I decided to take my Tree Pose to lofty heights. Think arms wide open like the scales of justice with a Bangles "Walk like an Egyptian" head twist. Add in a peculiarly folded knee.

Except now visualize me smirking with embarrassment, falling over like a top, thanks to Todd's distracting but accurate editorial comment.

Todd was right. I was showing off. Trying to look cool, like a vanilla yogurt covered pretzel. Like a seasoned yoga pro. Competing. Something you're never suppose to do in your yoga practice.

"Remember, there are no prizes in yoga," our 50s-ish bleach blonde instructor Randy reminded the class mid-sun salutation. "No one wins for being the best at holding a pose or for mastering the most complex balance. Yoga isn't about judging yourself or others. If you're not able to smile during your yoga practice, then perhaps you've forgotten yoga's true nature."

treepose

As I lay outstretched beneath a Mexican wool blanket in corpse pose, I tried to clear my mind for final relaxation but couldn't stop thinking about competition, prizes and motherhood. I thought, "There are no prizes in motherhood either. There's no Number One Mom award to strive for. So why do so many moms compete with each other?"

Nothing deep. Just something to ponder on a Sunday.

13 Comments:

At 12:33 PM, Blogger BlogWhore said...

my thoughts exactly.

exactly.

 
At 1:51 PM, Blogger liv said...

oh, my love, was it you i was channeling when i directed my yoga babies to place tip of tongue to roof of mouth and practice with a little smile?

and, there's no winning because it's not a contest---in yoga or in motherhood.

and i feel like i have earned the right to say all that as someone who has fallen ass over teakettle in a room with 40 people in it----right out of headstand. yeah, that's right: headstand.

 
At 2:26 PM, Blogger mad muthas said...

that's the very question. i can't do yoga cos i fall asleep if i lie down for more than 30 seconds.
x

 
At 9:05 PM, Blogger Awesome Mom said...

That is a very interesting question. Competition is something I shy away from but it seems like our society is so steeped in it that even I can't get entirely away from it.

 
At 11:01 AM, Blogger Mad Hatter said...

I suck so very terribly at yoga that I don't even dare compare my motherhood with anyone else's.

 
At 11:55 AM, Blogger Steven Novak said...

Vanilla yogurt covered pretzel...

Mmmmmmm ;)

Steve~

 
At 12:06 PM, Blogger Loralee Choate said...

I. Hate. Exercise.

This probably explains why I have the muscletone of headcheese. That said, I am actually a fan of yoga. I don't do it well, but it is the only time I exert energy that I don't feel horrible afterwards.

Yes, yoga is quite possibly the only form of exercise that doesn't bring forth howls of frustration gurgling from the black depths of my soul.

It's also a good thing there aren't any awards in it because I have the cooridination of an moose on crack.

 
At 12:42 PM, Blogger Lisa said...

I don't know why moms feel the need to compete either. It sure does suck the feeling of support and sisterhood out of things when they do, tho...

 
At 10:12 PM, Blogger Janice (5 Minutes for Mom) said...

oh yes - if only we didn't feel that urge to compete. but in yoga class (I have only been to a few) I am so trying to not make a fool of myself (i have no idea what I am doing and I am always trying to cheat and watch the others) - but I guess that is a form of competing too.

PS so glad you are coming to the big party!

 
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