There are a lot of difficulties associated with being a Caltech student. The main one is an utter lack of free time during the academic year because there is just so much work to do. However, Caltech student-dom is not without its perks. For example, we get free membership to the gym and can go to as many of the aerobics and yoga classes as we want. Now that I'm free from the burden of having to constantly be doing homework, I finally have time to start going to yoga classes again, so I started this afternoon. At the REI used gear sale this past weekend, I nabbed a nice (originally $50), practically unused yoga mat for about $16 and was excited to start using it right away. REI also tells me that my new yoga mat is made from environmentally friendly rubber - how sweet! Take a look:I could feel the decrease in flexibility and strength since the last time I'd taken a yoga class (its been way too long), but stretching and relaxing felt amazing and my yoga mat has a cool, colorful pattern on it that's nice for staring at while breathing from downward dog.
I'm hoping that getting back into yoga will help me with the rest of my climbing training. I have found in the past that strengthening and stretching all your muscles, even those not directly related to climbing, can help one move more confidently and fluidly, which I think is an important thing to balance out all that power gained from bouldering in the climbing gym.