Saturday, July 07, 2012

Are you flexible?

I get asked "are you flexible" a lot - generally because I'll say something like "Oh, at yoga this morning" and then the person I'm conversing with will say "didn't you just go to yoga yesterday" and I'm all "yeah, I go five times a week" and then they go "FIVE TIMES A WEEK."

Yes, so I go to yoga five times a week.

But still this question stumps me.

Am I flexible? Not really no.

Try to change my routine and I'm a crying mess.

Try to reschedule an appointment and I'll be upset.

Try and tell me my plan for some future event is not actually going to happen like I planned it. Ho boy. You better get ready for some irrational anger and tears.

(Inspector Climate is a very lucky man).

My first reaction to things is No. I may come around to yes - but I'm definitely full of no.

So am I flexible? No.

Can I touch my toes - yes.

Much like my inflexibility in life - my flexibility "on the mat" is very yin. I'm good at being little. Bending and folding into little packages.

I'm less "good" (yoga is not about being "good and bad" in poses - I haven't lost sight of that, you know, for what it's worth) at extensions. At having my arms and legs extended in opposite directions (I cannot, for example, do the splits - I can put both my feet behind my head...)

So, imagine my surprise when my yoga teacher came up to me the other day and said "because you're sooooooo flexible, you'll have to make sure you work on using strength and not flopping into poses"...

I'm so flexible? Why, yes! Maybe I am.

And that's the thing about yoga, on the mat I'm creating strength to become more flexible - and hopefully ever so slowly, I'll create strength to become flexible off the mat. Someday. Maybe not this life time. You can't rush this shiznit, you know?


  1. I love this for many reasons, but not because I'm flexible.

    About 5 years ago, I wrote a Facebook Note (because I didn't have a blog then, don't you know), about this thing called the Sit and Reach, which basically measures your flexibility. I said it measured my outer and INNER flexibility. And every time, to this day the verdict reads: You are not a flexible person in any way shape or form.

    Now being with a husband who has a very fluid concept of time has taught me a little. But I'm still waiting for him to adapt to me rather than the other way around.

    This post give me hope... that I can be physically flexible anyways.

  2. On the mat - yes.

    Off the mat - that's where I struggle. Even after living in the West African International Time (WAIT) zone for 2+ years.

    Do you really think spending more time working on physical flexibility can help with mental/emotional flexibility? Because Boy OH Boy do I need some help with that!!

  3. I love that you do yoga 5 times a week. It's inspiring!
    My little claim to fame in school was that I was the only girl not in a dance class that could do the splits. I thank martial arts for that.
    I cannot however touch the back of my head with my feet. So you win :P

  4. You're my favorite little bendy yogi!

  5. That's a keen observation by your yoga instructor. And flexibility in life is key - it doesn't come easily. I find that patience helps... but I don't really have much of that either!

  6. I get asked this a lot as well ( as soon as I tell anyone I do dance/calisthenics) and it always amazes me that to them the fact I can do the splits makes me flexible. To me, that's quite standard, the hard stuff requires strength and flexibility whilst looking graceful.

    but for as flexible as my body is (and truly, it's pretty bendy and amazing) my mind is it's polar opposite!

    Yoga five times weekly sounds amazing and I'd imagine that on some level, it can help with both?

  7. On the mat, yes. I've done a lot of dancing over the years and I can (still) do high-kicks like Britney used to do in the Baby One More Time video.

    (Tee hee!)

    I really should get my ass into gear and do some yoga, methinks I'd love it.

    Off the mat, yeah, pretty flexible. But of course I can be inflexible if the circumstances are right, heh heh.

  8. Lol, Loved the post, Coming online after a looong blogging hiatus. Good to see you going strong. In our part of the world they ask you to give a thumbs up, if your thumb is flexible so are you, if not you're doomed at yoga lol... it's an urban legand really but my thumb doesnt go beyond 90 degrees. SAD but true! lol
    SiddySays SiddyDoes

  9. I'm not very flexible in either regard... but I should probably try to work on being more flexible in life... I'm just such a planner so it annoys me when things change unexpectedly. And I've just plain given up hope that I will ever touch my toes again... ;-)

  10. This is deep girl! I wish I was more flexible both physically and mentally, but unfortunately, me and yoga don't mix. Maybe pilates...