Monday, July 19, 2010

Monday Morning

I had a busy day yesterday. Seems like I am writing that a lot these days! But anyway, I woke up early, did my asana practice, ate and went to teach the 10am class at Breath and Body Yoga. We did a great back bends sequence which culminated in eka pada urdhva danurasana and I think it went very well. I am endeavoring to show the Teacher Trainees of that group of a variety of approached to teaching Anusara Yoga other than a flow-based approach so this weekend I used very little vinyasa. Still not the same as how an ongoing class of mine runs but a good representation of the method, none the less.

We backed up a few steps in our observation training to great affect. We ended the day with much less confusion, upset and anxiety. the more I teach Ansuara Yoga to different groups in different regions the more I am convinced that learning this method just cannot be rushed. It jsut takes time to get it in one;s body, to translate that experience into our verbal instructions as teachers and then for the loop to be completed with our students actually understanding and doing what we are asking them to do. Something is kind of cool about that because at every step of the way, the process seems to thwart over zealous ambition. Yet, one has to have a fair amount of drive to engage and follow through on the process. So its a spanda, as always.

And the more I teach this method and the more i help people learn how to teach it, I find that extra pressure rarely helps anyone learn better or grow more. Some time the intensity of the teacher creates a feeling of pressure, sometimes our own tendencies toward perfectionism create the pressure, sometimes people seem to have a time frame goal in mind that makes sense but is somewhat arbitrary based on what needs to happen (like they vow they will be certified within the year but (A) they are not ready and (b) the process is not all within their control) and then that external time frame creates a feeling of pressure and of "having to get this by a certain time" which then generally creates the opposite outcome.

I think we have to be with these teaching a long time before they work on us enough to really be ready to teach Anusara Yoga well. the cool thing is it happens little by little. Weirdly, though, we get Teacher Training material in a huge download and then we think, "oh, I have to go home and do all of that tomorrow" which is just not true and just adds more of the above mentioned pressure. Really, as we learn these new teacher training skills, we simply have the opportunity/challenge/invitation to incorporate more and more of them into our teaching. And we can do it in manageable chunks. For instance, work on breath-based instructions for a few weeks. Then weed out indirect commands and excess -ing words and incomplete phrases that just dangle in the air like, "coming to the front of your mat" or "Stretching up." then refine your sequencing. then hone in on observation for a while. And so on. Don't leave Teacher Training and think you have to do it all tomorrow and be good at it right away. Chances are you can't and you won't.


I came home from the day of teaching and got ready for Anne's bridal shower which I hosted at my house. We had a fun turn out of folks- I am sure we missed several of you in the invitation process as it was somewhat rushed getting it all together due to my schedule- so I apologize if you weren't invited. It was kind of a last minute thing. Most of the people there we know from yoga so it was fun to hang out together socially as opposed to being in class. Anne got great gifts and seemed to enjoy herself and the celebration a lot.

Today I have no public work scheduled, just a day of some email, some meetings and some asana which I am looking forward to. And I just got an email from Darren with the flyer for our New Year's workshop! I am pretty darn excited about this event- Me, Noah and Darren in Tucson for New Year's Eve weekend with 54 of our closest friends. (Seriously- space is limited so sign up now- We are purposely keeping this small so we can really help people grow their advanced postures and so we can have an intimate, soulful gathering.) What better way to ring in a new year?

All right, that is about it for now. More soon.


Anne-Marie Bowery said...

We are signed up!

Anonymous said...