Friday, June 4, 2010

Friday Morning

Well, it's Friday Morning and my mind is kind of on the program ahead for Teacher Training this weekend and getting my final ducks in a row for that. This is our third weekend together and we will be diving deeper into sequencing, inner and outer spiral and really making a foray into, not just setting a theme well, but incorporating heart-based instructions. I spend a lot of time with the group on the first two weekends paring down language a lot. Taking out every extraneous instruction and getting things as bare bones as possible. Then, once everything is stripped down to the breath, then name of the pose and basics of how to get into the pose, we start adding in the UPA's, the heart qualities and so on. Also this week, we get into verbal adjustments.

So all in all, its a big weekend ahead. This verbal adjustment piece is really big. This is really where the "teaching to what you see" idea gets it's momentum and good verbal adjustments can make all the difference in the world in terms of effective teaching. And this is also where many certification videos need the most improvement. By the time someone is applying for certification, they know the method, they know the script, and so forth. This piece of looking at a group and giving a refinement or adjustment that is based on what you see in the moment that will help 75% of the group improve to me is one of the main dividing lines between an anusara inspired teacher and a certified teacher. There are more dividing lines as well, but that's a biggie in my book.

We had a good night in classes last night. I taught back bends for the 3/4 class at 4:30 and we worked on standing poses mostly in the level 2/3 class at 6:00. I had big mix of people who have been long-time students with people brand new to me and my teaching so that is always an interesting dynamic on a lot of levels. The yoga, expectations and instructions and so forth are just one level. There is also an interpersonal level at play.

I know over the years from doing this that one of the great things about Ansuara Yoga can, if we are not careful, be one of the shortcomings or downfalls of our approach. Because of our dedication to community and because of the relationships we foster in and out of class with one another, we often get very close as time goes by. It can be easy to be so familiar with one another that we share private jokes and a kind of intimacy that when new people come around, instead of feeling welcomed, they feel left out.

I know none of that happens on purpose and I know no one wants that to be the case. I mean no one I know consciously wishes to exclude anyone and no one new to a class wants to feel left out, but its a dynamic we really have to watch for. By the same token if a teacher suddenly gets super formal with long time students just because there are new people in the room, well, then there are problems with that also. The main thing is, we do not want kula to become clique.

Anyway, all in all, it was a great day yesterday. On with the day.


Olga Rasmussen said...

Loved the reminders on verbal adjustments, taking out extraneous instructions, and coming back to the breath! You insights continually invite your readers to become better teachers. Would love to do an Immersion or TT with you some times! Blessings, Olga

Anonymous said...

you‘ve got a great personality!............................................................

Emma at South Mountain Yoga said...

if you are ever moved to do so, I would LOVE to hear more on that dividing line between inspired and certified. Maybe that's a conversation rather than a blog. mwah.