Half Primary Practice
I have been practicing half primary for the past couple of weeks. I had taken a few short trips this Spring and it interfered with my regular practice and I had to essentially start over from square one. Also when I got back after Memorial Day Weekend I created three 4' x 8' raised garden beds. I shoveled almost a yard of garden soil into each of them out of the back of my pickup truck. That put a lot of stress on my right hip and it went out. The Primary Practice really works the hips. It is just what I need to get my hips realigned.
Half Primary is when you only practice Primary through Navasana. I go directly from Navasana to Back Bending or Urdhva Danurasana. I had been doing back drops but had lost them with out my regular practice but they came back. My feet are a little splayed apart but not bad. They should remain parallel.
After I do three Urdhva Danurasana's I stand up and drop back five times. On the fifth one I hold for five breaths and then stand up again. I have a rope attached to the wall. I but it around my waist so the rope is over my sacrum. I then swing back and forth with my arms crossed to simulate the assisted back drops that Sharth and Guruji would give.
On the fifth one I take my arms up and back and to the floor and walk my hands in as close to my feet as I can and hold for five breaths with the assistance of the rope around my waste. Then I come up, remove the rope from around my waist and sit down into forward bend or Paschimatonasana. This is the counter pose to the back bends. I hold this for 15 deep long breaths in order to release my back.
Normally Guruji or Sharath would either press on my back with their hands after lying my mat up over my back or kneel down with their knees on either side of my hips and put their weight on top of me. Guruji would often reach forward and take the tops of my feet and pull them forward and lift his knees off the floor to give the full benefit.
The weight of the body on top with it's heat and breathing in sinc with my breath was a very powerful release.
From Paschimotanasana I inhale up and exhale and place my hands at my sides and lift up and do a vinyasa and jump through and lie down for the finishing postures. When I was in LA the weekend before Memorial Day Weekend I practiced with Sharath on Saturday and Sunday doing Led Primary.
Sharath has added alternate nostril breathing after Padmasana in the seated closing portion. But instead of alternating back and forth from side to side he does five on the right side and five on the left side before lifting up into Utpluthi for ten long breaths.
I am sure I will resume a Full Primary Practice again at some point when it feels right. It is summer now and I have managerial responsibilities on my properties and need the extra energy conserved from doing only Half Primary. I was surprised I was able to begin standing up so soon again. I had been doing Half Intermediate to Karandavasana and thought I would need that practice to get back into back drops. It was a pleasant surprise when they without!