Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Good morning

Good morning!

Well, I started writing yesterday morning and then the day got started with email business, a long call with email tech support and so forth and I couldn't finish the entry so now it is Thursday morning. As usual, it has been a busy few days.

On Tuesday, I spent a little time at the pool, ate lunch and then I did my practice at Castle Hill from 1-3 and met Kim for a private at 3 and then taught my 4:30 class. We worked on backbends and applied the shoulder principles and refinements John gave me to urdhva danurasana and to eka pada rajakapotasana 2. We do not work on that a lot as it requires tremendous opening in the front groins and a lot more balance that eka pada rajakapotasana 1 so it was great to visit it. We used the chairs and that helps. A lot of regular folks were missing so the people who came who are new to that class did not get a gentle hello. Oh well. Its a moving stream. There is only so much you can do to keep a class moving along and still help people join in in a way that is welcoming. Sigh. I do try but I wonder sometimes....

I went up to Breath and Body for the 6:30 class and we worked on variety of postures to build cores strength and some hip work to do padmasana. Several folks in the class sat in lotus for the first time and so that was fun.

Anyway, that was Tuesday.

Wednesday morning I taught Focus on Form and we worked on a few of the twist principles and our peak pose was parivirtta trikonasana. We spent a lot of time refining its component parts and folks made a lot of progress in it which was fun to see. I did my practice from 2-4 at Castle Hill and then made my way up to Breath and Body to teach at 4:30. We worked on getting the outer shoulder blades firmly anchored on the back and practiced sorting out some refinements with urdhva danurasana. It went well. I taught a very similar class at Bodhi at 7:30.

So- that's the outer news. I think the inner news is not quite fit to print. I am, however, evaluating my local teaching schedule for the fall. Since my travel schedule picks back up considerably, I will scale back a few ongoing public classes. And I am planning to offer a Teacher Training and Mentoring group. One thing that I have been aware of (and scheming about how to address) is how best to help those students who have completed an Immersion and Teacher Training prepare for Anusara-Inspired status. Students report to me that they do not really know "what is next" for them.

And on one level, there is no "next." There is just continuing to do the same things- study, practice, go to class, practice, teach, practice- with deeper insight, greater clarity and more profound commitment because by now things are pretty repetitious and your learning curve may have slowed and that can be frustrating. But on another level, it can be really helpful to have support and to have assistance during this integration and "taking the basics to a new level" phase.

I am reminded of a story one of my mentors in Anusara Yoga told me. We were all at a TT with John and on a break some students were grumbling to her about how "it's all the same thing as he taught last year." She told me she told them, "That is because on one level, it is all the same thing. But if you were actually doing everything you have already been taught you would be certified by now. So it is not so much whether you know the information but about how well you are implementing it."

Along simlar lines, I remember going to a weekend of TT in Iyengar Yoga with Anne and the Senior Teachers there said the same thing. They said, "Really as yoga teachers all we really do is demonstrate, observe, correct, adjust and describe. But we get better and better at doing those basic things and more capable at applying those basic skills to more challenging situations and harder poses."

Am I preaching? I hope not. I find this so inspiring. Any of us who teach know that some of our best classes are when we stay close to the basics, when we remain close to the bone, so to speak, and when we allow the simplicity of our approach to carry the depth of the message.

Anyway- long story short, if you have made it this far into the entry... I am going to offer a 12-week course starting in September designed to help people in this phase of the process and to provide support, assistance and follow-up after the big deluge of study and practice that is the Immersion Year. If you are interested, please send me an email ( and I will put your name on the list to get the details out to you as soon as they become available. Given the very limitations I have in my time and energy, this will be the best way (and the main way) I will be able to provide mentoring assistance this year. This way I can have one conversation with 10 people rather than 10 conversations, 1 person at a time. I am pretty excited about it.

Okay, I am subbing Vinyasa for Gioconda this morning. That should be fun.

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