I’ve been at the yoga studio a lot in the past few days – yet I didn’t once roll out my own mat. I’ve been a yoga teaching machine!
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In the last four days, I:
- taught my Yoga Basics class Thursday evening
- assisted the Yoga Basics Saturday morning class
- taught a Beyond Basics workshop Saturday afternoon
- subbed a Restorative Yoga class Sunday afternoon
And in that time frame, I:
…smiled when I had a nice showing at class on Valentine’s Day evening. With that lovey-dovey holiday, I figured that most would opt to be cuddled up with their sweethearts. Instead, several of my regulars attended – including my dad. Even sweeter: a husband and wife came to practice side by side of one another. Adorable.
…got a kick of of our students faces when I sneaked my way around the studio Saturday morning, gently leading students into deeper standing poses (bend that knee in Warrior 1!) and helping out one of my fellow TT graduates with one of my favorite assists (the hand grab in half moon pose gives people such length and extension!)
…demonstrated (to the best of my ability) the jump back to chaturanga during the Beyond Basics workshop. And then, I stressed the importance of knowing your body, letting my students know that stepping back to high plank and lowering down with your knees on the ground is PERFECTLY acceptable – I do it all the time. It keeps my shoulder safe while I focus on other poses that build upper arm strength. (It was even better to know that Jen was about to go all momma bear on me if I tried the jump back one more time. Thanks to her, her friend Katie, Lisa, Kasey and blog reader Alicia for joining in on the workshop fun!)
…managed my anxiety in teaching my first Restorative Yoga class. I was really nervous about this one. I’ve taken this class on several occasions, so I knew I could take my previous class experiences and put them into practice with my students. But there are so many props to use – bolsters, blocks and blankets, oh my! I filled the 90 minute class with centering breathing exercises and four relaxing asana poses – including an extended savasana. The students were more relaxed when they left, but I left uncertain and still shaky. I was happy I pushed myself to try a new teaching experience, but it left me ready to get back to my regular class – even wanting to find ways to improve on it.
…rejoiced when Hans asked me to explain some more basic poses to him - eventually teaching him through how to make the transition from crow -> headstand -> crow -> chatarunga. Apparently being able to bench press more than 300 pounds leads you to also be able to do some fun yoga transitions. It was a lovely ending to a busy yoga filled weekend.
LONG STORY SHORT: I still have a lot to learn as a yoga teacher, but weekends like this when I’m emerged in it helps me realize that I’ve already come a long way since I started teaching classes in August. I love that I am able to make it a part of my life while balancing a full-time job and so many vital relationships. It’s not easy to make it all happen: I have to say no to other things some times. I know where my priorities lie – teaching this type of yoga suits me and I love to share it others as it fulfills me so much. I still can’t believe that I get to do this on a regular basis – although I’m happy to return to my once-a-week teaching schedule this week!!
How do you push yourself in your practice of choice? By taking an extra yoga class? Running an extra mile? Taking a new fitness class?