Today’s lesson encompasses undertaking the warm weather balancing skills in a cabin on an Antarctic explorer ship.

We have relearned our gym skills, climbed ice-covered rock pathways, noted that penguins stuff themselves on krill before returning to freezing rookeries.

Being warm in our cabin is the motivation to start I-Yoga. We start with the mountain pose, staring into icebergs as they drift past the window. The occasional penguin lifts its head as we drift past breathing deeply.

Raising hands above heads creates a new version of the pose, sandwiched between the 210cm ceiling and the floor. We flatten the upper limits by folding arms behind ears.

Downward-facing dogs, bums as high as possible, right-angled hips and contraction of abs that are stretched taut over 17 desserts in five days, breakfast, lunch and tea.

Three-legged dog is possible, but as the ship rides a wave, the leg stretched skywards skews wildly to the left, gets caught on a shelf above the desk, swiping a collection of items to the floor before one gracefully extracts the toes from the rail that prevents books from sliding off.

Moving effortlessly into an arabesque with one leg stretched behind and an arm stretched in front, balance becomes crucial. Lateral movements are physically impossible as the ‘generous’ floorspace allows a 65cm by 150cm space to perform our yoga routine. A sudden lateral roll throws him off-balance, personal tackle pressed firmly against the outward-facing window.

Shrieking with laughter, I tip forwards, finishing face up on the bed.

I should mention that he had risen in a darkened cabin and thrown back the heavy drapes, stark naked.

At this precise moment a Chinese passenger is attempting to fix a strand of hair that has drifted out from under her beanie in the darkened glass.
It was only a day later that we confirmed it was one-way glass, except when lights were on in the cabin. Hello Shackleton!

There are of course much more stable activities you can participate in, and not in the confines of a ship’s cabin. Visit the QSAM and Team Sydney website links: www.queersportsmelbourne.org and www.teamsydney.org.au

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