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Saturday, April 27, 2013

Sunday, April 21, 2013

David Swenson

Woke up this morning feeling sore all over as if I'd got beaten up BAD while sleeping last night. This could only mean that I've been practising Ashtanga yoga ~ again. Perhaps I'm a little, err, sadomasochism (!) but despite me swearing not to practise the Primary Series ever again (cos it's physically very demanding), I keep returning to it. Perhaps I'm addicted to the "good pain" or I just enjoy the mental and physical challenges this series poses (sorry, bad pun). 

Anyway, this weekend I've signed up an Ashtanga workshop mainly because the person leading the three-day workshop is renowned yogi/yoga instructor David Swenson. http://www.ashtanga.net/  Have to say I'd only heard of his name but never attended any of his yoga sessions so I'm intrigued and curious as to why he is "renowned" ... but a couple of minutes into his class I understood why.

David Swenson @ Pure Yoga HK

David is actually a very, very sensible and kind teacher. He wants his students to practise safely even we step onto the mat; he tells us we can modify: i.e. if we can't perform the more challenging poses (mostly ones that require extreme flexibility towards the end of the Primary Series), do NOT even attempt it cos it could lead to injuries. So if we can't bind, do something else instead though he stresses whatever we do, we should pay attention to the importance of alignment. Also, this guy is just SO funny. He begins each session by asking the class whether we have any questions - any questions - so from how to position a foot to why this woman gets sexually "activated" when she tries to, err, activate her bandha.

So far, the workshop has proved invaluable because David teaches us, methodically, how to do the jumping forward/backward & jumping through and jumping in the vinyasa (flow) ... there sure is a LOT of jumping back and forth in Ashtanga yoga and I think I'd finally mastered the jumping forward (yeah!!) But I will still have to work on my handstand cos I don't know how to "fall skilfully" yet. And I am totally clueless re: the bandha ...

This afternoon we'll be going upside down, a session that I'm greatly looking forward to!!!

PS Thanks David, I now know who to do headstand in the middle of the room :o)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

An Ego

Ah! So I'm not the only one who has this experience (!)


I just left a message on his blog: maybe it's a "guy thing" but I think we suddenly get competitive when there are other people around, esp. when doing the same thing. 

Most of us are brought up to (constantly) compare ourselves with others (I think that is one of the first topics I learnt in my social psychology class that many of us build our "self" and sense of existence based on how other people perceive us etc) ... but as we grow older, and gain more confidence  in ourselves, we begin to relax more. These days I just show up to my yoga classes with a block; the message is clear: yes, I need help and, yes, I need to modify cos there are asanas that I simply cannot physically do and achieve but it's okay, the point is not to do the perfect pose but how I can still benefit from a pose with modifications. How other students/yogis do their poses/practice is really their business; but it is also okay to admire their amazing poses because yoga is such a beautiful art form too! It's also okay to be inspired.   

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Sony Xperia Z (Part 2)

After several recharging cycles, battery performance appears to have improved a bit, though still not at a satisfactory level. If, say, 10 per cent could last an entire that would be great; at the moment, is around 20 per cent, which is a huge consumption consider I haven't used the phone much than to chat on Line and checking out Instagram/Twitter/Google+ ... I don't even use it to play music, movie or games. So will see if battery life will further improve the coming week (esp I already have the power saving mode on)...

Elsewhere, have had a really enjoyable Hot Yoga class yesterday ... there were a number of hip opening poses -- side angle and half moon -- that were simple but totally effective. I'm looking forward to the Hatha 2 class later this afternoon. I told my instructor that I don't mind doing more hip opening poses today ... it is, apparently, a good way to unleash those locked/pent-up emotions within (!!!)

Game-wise, I'm switching between Persona 4: the Golden (playthrough no. 3) and Final Fantasy Type 0 (playthrough no. 2) because both have very good gameplay mechanics. Type 0 in particular because of all the different cool attack moves! Love playing those. But am also looking to play something new. But Final Fantasy X HD is not expected to be released until later on this year ... what a bummer!


Saturday, April 6, 2013

Sony Xperia Z



After having rediscovered Samsung Nexus S recently (see earlier entry), I've been using the smartphone so much (with Line, Instagram, Twitter, Google+ and other apps on all the time) that it started to play up/hang. Its battery life is also pretty miserable. So it looked like my usage had quickly surpassed the phone's capability/limit and it was time to upgrade (yeah!) I did think about waiting for the release of Samsung S4 and the Blackberry Q10 but I was also interested in exploring new brands. A friend recently visited Tokyo and said the new Sony Xperia Z is all the rage over there. Having checked the model out on the Net (it comes in Black, White and ... Purple, think Cadbury's, Yummy!) I decided to go for it.

I haven't regretted my purchase ~ so far. Here is my quick review:

* form factor: it is quite rectangular and weighs on/feels very solid in the hand, which I like; and it's Purple!
* It comes with a purple cover ...
* screen colour: it IS Sony so it's absolutely brilliant (quite literary), vibrant and sharp;
* music: supposed to be really good but haven't really tested that out, same goes with camera;
* applications: it syncs with my Nexus S via my Google account ... just how cool is that?! Great multitasking;
* battery life: still testing this. It has a "stamina mode" which boosts power save but am not totally convinced;
* hardware: battery is built in and has more that what I need for internal memory; allows memory card,
* call quality: come on, I'm NOT using this as a phone -- maybe for emergency only;
* text input: its handwritten recognition is great and has voice input, but I still prefer the Blackberry keyboard

So, other than battery life, which I still need to test out with more charge cycles, so far so good!!!