My first impression of getting into supta kurmasana was pretty much wanting to throw a white flag. Kurmasana was fine, but supta kumasana... impossible! No way i can squeeze myself under a locked ankles, gripping my fingers, wishful thought. Just trying to get into the position in that few seconds, i'm already pouring with sweat.
Then, i check up on the YouTube, and found an alternative way, by sitting up and getting one leg up to the back of the neck, then the other leg up. So, i started with the easier side--- bring my right leg up. Many times, still couldn't make it; for one year... finally i got myself bounded and breathing comfortably. I was elated of course, oh... finally supta kumasana seems to happen on me too!
When i went to Frankfurt in a practice with teacher Olivia, she told me, " Left leg up first." I looked at her with my eyes- wide opened, and i attempted. Oh No! I fell and rolled all over, and teacher Olivia came to help me each time i attended her practice.
Back in Singapore, while in a practice program with teacher Kino Macgregor, she said the same thing, " The tradition is, left leg up first." My heart sunk. No that i'm sad, just that i thought all my one whole year of effort has been erase, and i've to start all over again. Just like, if you've always been writing with your right hand, and now you have to write with your left.
Just the whole process, seems to be taking too much effort!
During my own self- practice, when reaching supta kumasana, 80% of me wanting to go back to what i used to do ( right leg up first), doing the easier way. 20% of me is reminding me of practice with integrity, doing the proper way. And so, i learn to take a few steps back, and work on the pose again.
Shirly, my working partner is facing the same issue as i am. Once we sat down over a coffee, and started whining about struggling with the same things we had struggled. Done with the complaints, and starts cracking... that's part of our learning of practice with fluidity.
That's yoga, isn't it? When we thought we can only stand on our both feet, it teaches you how to stand on the hands. When we starts to get comfortable with rigidity, something will knock over us to remind us that life is full of unpredictable waves. Surf on it!
If you have no clue , or picture the pose ( supta kumasana) i was talking about, this (photo) is it:
With courtesy, image from this link: http://mayalassiter.com/2012/04/david-garrigues-rocks-durham-with-a-mysore-intensive-and-weekend-workshop/supta-kurmasana/