Thursday, April 15, 2010

Taking Photos and Video of Your Own Training

As I started to write this morning....

One of my strongest suggestions to new HKC's is......"Become your own first client." What do I mean by that? Well, teaching requires:

#1 an "eye" You HAVE to be able to recognize mistakes and,

#2 how to fix the mistakes, lol!

#3 how to communicate the corrections

Anyway, I believe the best way to start, if you are inexperienced in teaching, is to watch yourself. Take video of your own form and training. If you don't have a video recorder take photos (have someone take photos) of your form. It's invaluable....period.

This is never more true than in my yoga practice. Why more yoga Studios don't offer the service of photos, and video recording of indivual practices is, in my opinion, mind blowing! Seriously. If we can't see what we are doing, how can we correct it?

I discovered this by mistake! I started to video record my "little kettlebell combinations" with my Cannon camera (which has a 3 minute capacity, btw, lol) to post on my blog, not for my own study....I've since posted way over 200 videos, here's one of my earliest videos....enjoy, lol! Lots of things have changed....yikes! And that's part of my point.....I've been able to make alot of changes from seeing myself on camera.

My point is.....make the corrections on yourself! It's amazing, to me, how looking at yourself from another point of view enables you to coach yourself! A good example is an elaboration of my last blogpost of my Bikram yoga practice, specifically of the pose known as "Rabbit". In "Rabbit", you start by sitting "Japanese style" (on top of your two legs), grabbing your heels, and "rounding forwards", until your head touches your knees. At this point you lift your hips up, towards the ceiling, trying to get a 90 degree angle with your legs. In other words, the "goal" is to get your legs completely vertical, while keeping your forehead connected with your knees......

Let me tell's impossible to see how "vertical" your legs are to the ceiling, because you cannot turn your head while in the posture.....and it ain't easy, lol!

Here's the progression. Grab your heels from behind, thumbs on the outside, (top picture), round down until you forehead touches your knees (next picture)....this may take took me about 3 years.

At this point, lift your hips up, towards the ceiling, keeping your forehead and knees touching....if they come apart then walk them back up together.....this may sound easy, but it's not, LOL!

Personally, as I lift my hips up, my forehead comes away from my knees, (except on a good day....a very good day!), BUT, walking them forwards does not work for me.....they just seperate again....I'm working on this, lol!

My next blogpost will be about being friends with the person that own the yoga studio! LOL! Michael Mayle just opened up a new Bikram yoga studio in the Silver Creek area of San Jose, (, and lucky for me, he's HKC certified! He's one of the smarties that has recognized the value in yoga, and kettlebells! I'm starting a Beginning Kettlebell Swing class this next Monday 4/19, @ 6:15am at Balance Yoga Center, Silver Creek.....finishing just time to attend the 7:15am Bikram class.....I've got to get my practice in afterall, lol!

See you there!


Laree Draper said...

Fascinating! Thanks, Tracy, I see what you're talking about now.

I was able to get forehead to knees fairly easy (Feldenkrais training gave me the mobility; I'm lacking entirely in muscular flexibility... no yoga history here). I'll have to work on the next step -- head came off the knees as soon as I tried to straighten my legs.

I can feel this one will be good for me, something I need! Thanks again for the detailed follow-up.

Tracy Reifkind said...


Interesting how you credit Feldenkrais, a "posture movement and mobility method" of training, NOT yoga to help you with yoga! Interesting because this is the exact reason I decided to train for my Level 2 RKC....

Sure, I'll learn Level 2 skills, but more attractive to me was learning and practicing the technique drills that I recognized will help me with my already has!

It's not "yoga" that helps you with "yoga" sometimes, lol! So true with many other sports/training that alot of people don't recognize.

It's amazing to me how many of my fellow Bikram practioners don't do any other type of training to improve their practice, they only increase their Bikram.....a few kettlebell swings would greatly increase their conditioning to improve endurance and strength in many, if not all, of the postures.

Laree Draper said...

Well, I actually still can't *do* yoga. But the Feldenkrais has at least gotten me to a starting point. :~)

Mark Reifkind said...

awesome practice my love.I so miss being able to train yoga next to you. sweaty savasana indeed.

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