Sleeping in Savasana

My yoga journey

Learning the Sanskrit Names

on August 17, 2015

One of the challenges that I’ve found with starting Mysore classes is that the teacher uses mainly the Sanskrit names for the poses. I know a few of them and I’m quite happy if I’m told that utkatasana is next and can do chair pose quite happily. In the seated sequence I think I’m often going in the wrong order and being told that I need to do Janu Sirsasana or Pascimottasana next is very confusing for me.

Sanskrit is a beautiful language and looks very pretty written down in comparison to Roman/Latin written text. I guess that’s why so many yogi’s get tattoos in Sanskrit. I love the way that the letters look even in simple words like ‘Om’

I’m turning once again to the cheat sheets. They have the pictures and Sanskrit names under each pose, which will help. I also bought Kino MacGregor’s book, The Power of Ashtanga Yoga. I started reading it last night and I think it’ll help with remembering the poses and sequence. It includes the full primary series with each pose in detail and a photo montage of the whole sequence. Plus it’s a really nice coffee table book with beautiful pictures of the poses and lots of guidance on alignment, the benefits of the poses and options for adaptation if you can’t get into the full variation of the pose.


This morning I was feeling a little overwhelmed at a certain points in my practice. I was trying to remember the sequence, the names, the correct alignment and it all seemed very difficult. I guess if it was easy then more people would do it and there wouldn’t just have been three of us practicing this morning. I think it’s also because the group is so small that I get so many corrections and so much guidance, so it’s good but hard work. I hope that it’s going to get easier with time and that I will remember more of the sequence and the correct names so will need less guidance. Also I should try to remember that I’ve only been doing this style of class for less than two weeks so I can’t expect to be perfect at it straight away no matter how much I want to be.

I’m not even going to attempt to learn the opening and closing chants just yet, even if they are very pretty when written out and have a lovely meaning.




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