I purchased your book in Mysore, India and read it in a single sitting. I plan to keep it close. A constant reminder of yoga and life's simple lessons.
It reminded me why I fell in love with yoga and how I had forgotten the calming affect my practice used to bring me. I am considering buying a copy for each of my teachers and students. I think my teachers will benefit from reading it as it will remind them that beginners sometimes find the shala as a mysterious place filled with apprehension and anxiety. On the other hand, I am hoping my students will read it and see for themselves the true benefits of yoga and not quit the first time they get frustrated.
Well done David. It IS a long way to the floor.
I read the book over the last couple of days and loved it. I saw my own trials and tribulations on many of the pages. I think you do a great job explaining the process - and benefits - of building a dedicated practice. In a way that is free of pretension and over-mystification. Ashtanga is a form that can appeal to a lot of "regular guys" - - but you deftly handle the manner in which it quietly moves you from exercise to self-reflection and inevitably changes your entire orientation and belief system. I admire the honesty with which you approached the book.
Hope your practice is going well and hopefully I’ll bump into you in some exotic shala somewhere someday.
All the best
You are right, yoga has made a significant impact on my life too. What you wrote resonates a lot with what I have felt. I have a feeling that you and I share similar character as it refers to letting go.
I also appreciate your mentioning the affect of sports and weight lifting and its affects on ones yoga practice. It saved me a 1000 (no, actually a million) nagging words to my son as I told him that weight lifting would interfere with his yoga practice. I guess coming from you, in the way you said it in your book, allowed him to understand it better.
ps: Colin, my husband loves your book a LOT!
By the way, I have bought additional copies today topping it to 5 now! It’ll make good birthday and Xmas gifts.
Blog entry by the co-owner of a writing school in Malaysia:
Friday, August 04, 2006
It’s been a while. I miss reading a really good book. And so I was very happy when our SIP (and now Advanced SIP) graduate David Byck put a really good book in my hands.
And I was ecstatic that it was a copy of his own first book “It’s A Long Way To The Floor” a book about how he started yoga.
It reads just like how he speaks! If you know David, you’ll know what I mean…
It’s a simple, unpretentious book that is rich in meaning. Made me miss my yoga lessons. And also reminded me of some basic, important life lessons. It’s the kind of book I wish I would write one day.
Hello Mr. Byck,
I have started reading your book and I am enjoying the simplicity and truthfulness of it.
Dear Shri Byck,
I am from India and chanced on your book. I appealed because it narrated the journey from the stage of a beginner and I could relate to several parts of the story.
Usually when one sees photographs of masters in asanas I would feel that somewhere they had a head start and I could never reach there. I am still unsure whether I could achieve some degree of flexibility but I slog on. I enjoy my yoga practice sessions, I feel tall at the end of it.
I wish to thank you for a wonderful book.
I am reading your book and thoroughly enjoying it.
I even mentioned you and your book in an article I submitted to Spa Asia magazine several days ago.
Blog of the founder of a publishing company and yoga practitioner:
I’ve practiced yoga for over two years, I have a daily one-hour home proactive, I’ve read countless books, my teacher has been generously ‘tutoring’ me in yoga philosophy for the past few weeks, I can chant the entire 24 lines of the opening prayer in Sanskrit by heart… and still, I’m not ready for my first trip to India. Each time I have a bad practice, I asked myself what made me think I could be a yoga teacher. When I have a good practice, I ask myself if it will be good enough for THEM. The students.
I wonder if I’m going to be the only one in the teacher training who can’t nestle my head in my feet in a backbend, stand motionless on my head or stay awake during meditation. Each time these thoughts race through my mind, I could feel my excitement draining faster than KL’s irrigation system. It came to the point where I almost regretted enrolling.
Then, two days ago, I was given the privilege to read a new friend’s manuscript. The author is an Ashtanga practitioner and the book, It’s A Long Way To The Floor, details his yogic journey. I read the book in record time, partly because the writing flowed so well and mostly because it summoned every one of my insecurities to the surface.
Apparently, David had battled with the same issues I did when I first started – competitiveness, pride, frustration and disappointment. Over time, these negative emotions were replaced by the same emotions that spurred me to walk this spiritual path – patience, acceptance, humility, surrender, peace and pure happiness. By the time I reached the tenth chapter, I remembered why I fell in love with yoga in the first place. I fell in love with yoga because of how it made me feel, not because of what it made me do. I realize that I will never be completely ready for this first trip to India and perhaps I’m not supposed to be. After all, I’m going there to learn and if I think I already know everything, then I will miss out on everything.
My excitement has begun slowly creeping back and now, I can’t wait to get on that plane. I am ready now. So thank you David Byck for reminding me of everything I briefly forgot.
Reply to above blog:
Is this David Byck of KL? If it is, he used to teach me with is wife, Alina at their yoga studio, Tapas. They are an amazing pair and to this day, when I have no choice but to attend classes taught by inexperienced, lifeless yoga teachers, I fade their voices out and listen to David’s voice in my head. He told us that when he first started yoga, he was so stiff he could barely touch his knees without bending. Look at him now! I have no doubt that India will be an amazing experience for you and I suspect you will find some answers there.
PS. Where can I find his book?
My name is Hari and read your impressive experience which is shared in a beautiful language. I purchased this book in Mysore (India) to where I belong. I didn’t understand Yoga and its affects till I read your book.