Old Dog Learns New Trick: Downward Dog
On November 14th, 2015, the Queen’s Law Health & Fitness Club hosted a yoga night at the quaint and comfortable Studio 330. The studio, located at—you guessed it—330 Princess Street, operates on a pleasingly affordable “donation-based approach” because it is a not-for-profit organization. This made it all the more inviting for someone like myself who has never attempted yoga before. I had some hopes that yoga’s focus on body awareness and positioning as opposed to raw strength would be a breeze since I like to throw around weights from time to time in the ARC.
My nominally secure ego has serious issues trying any activity at 23 years of age. I have a feeling of inertia, which tends to get in the way of me trying new things and being a level zero amateur. Fortunately, Studio 330’s Dallas has a knack for giving precise and intuitive instructions and kept us in pose just long enough for my embarrassingly inflexible body to cooperate. While there were about 40 of us in the room, I was really surprised by how the atmosphere was conducive to focusing on your body and your practice—whether you are a bumbling novice like me or a seasoned yogi.
It is very easy to narrowly define activity. As a first-timer, I admittedly tried yoga with a lot of doubt and cynicism. That sentiment was dispelled very quickly as I realised how talented, fluid, and limber the other attendees were. The focus on poise, control, breathing, and balance was truly unlike anything I had experienced before—to say I have a new found respect for practitioners is an understatement.
A day later and I am in some serious pain. Not the “ouch don’t touch me” pain, but the “I finally did something beneficial for my body” pain. I was fairly exhausted towards the end of the session, but I really enjoyed Dallas’ perfect pacing that afforded just the right amount of time at the end of the session to lie around with your eyes closed. I was finally in my element. Namaste.
Hamish Mills-McEwan is a contributor to Juris Diction. He is a 2L student.