So this week in yoga teacher training, we’re learning about the poses. But not just what the poses are and how to do them, but where the risks are, what cues to give, how to modify them. A little bit on sequencing but not that much yet. That will probably be Thursday. He’s working us hard – we are practice teaching on each other. Some poses I’m comfortable with, others less so. I did a not-too-bad job on wide angle forward bend today, but kind of awkwardly lead my classmate through a stilted garland pose. We both avoided crow pose because, well, neither one of us can do it yet. You really don’t want to try to teach something you can’t do. Which is why any students I have won’t be trying Bound Half Lotus Forward Bend yet…
Physical demoing is worth a thousand words, but going all the way into a pose won’t help if you’re teaching beginners who are super stiff or people with injuries. That’s why he’s making us learn how to say it out loud. It’s good.
I can see the intelligence in this system of yoga as well. It categorizes the poses differently than what is usually taught. Whereas other systems will teach standing, seated, and supine poses, etc., this system recognizes them by their energetics. Forward bends – whether standing, seated or supine; extension poses as a group, and so on. It does make sense and I can see how this will help me build an intelligent class, by following what actions I’m stringing together like beads. I’ll be able to see the flow of the class and know if there are poses that just shouldn’t follow each other.
Oh, but my body is sore again from all the yoga. And from sitting on the floor almost all day. And the studio plants have a little gnat infestation or something and two days in a row the stupid things have tried to fly or crawl up my nose while I’m trying to focus in a meditation. Hmph. It’s not very yogic (ahimsa), but both times I hoped I squished them when I reached up to stop them.
A vignette from a previous day:
Walking through a wet and overgrown path, looking up to find little snails hanging from the undersides of the short trees leaves. Silent running, except for the jingle of the city tag, rabies tag, other tags on my dog’s collar.
I smell human skin and the alcohol he’s saturated himself with before I see him, sitting a little ways from the path at the base of a tree, drinking. I see him, say nothing, continue on across the groomed walking/bike path through the middle of the park and into the forest on the other side. I cannot help him. I continue, walking the humid, recently rained upon forest paths with my dog.