Monday, February 10, 2014

Teacher Training: Month 5

I finished my next-to-last weekend of yoga teacher training this weekend, and it was a duzy. One of the other students in the class said on Saturday morning that she could hardly believe that we were five months in, but, yes, we have just one more workshop day in February, and then one more weekend - March 8 and 9 - and I'll have my 200 hour teaching certificate!

I was feeling pretty good when I started the 75 minute flow class on Saturday morning. I knew it was going to be intense, and I paced myself, watching my breath, taking a few child's poses when I needed them, and I felt energized at the end. Then we had the community class, another 75 minute class, which was even better than the flow class - I was really "in the zone" for that one, feeling relaxed, feeling happy while I watched my breath flow in and out...

We had our lunch break, and then went over some basic sun salutations. I love sun salutations - in the summer time, when I can chuck my mat out on the back porch first thing in the morning, I love to welcome the day with a dozen of these flowing movements.

Next we dove into the Bhagavad Gita, and it was INTENSE. I'll go more into that later - it seems that the timing was just right for me for something, apparently - but safe to say the entire discussion left me feeling like a giant hand had just come down and patted me on the back, as if to say, "I love you."

At four o clock, Debbie had us each randomly choose a slip of paper on which she had written a scenario for a yoga class. We had thirty minutes to design a 10-pose sequence of yoga poses that fit the scenario we had drawn, and then we each had a turn teaching it to the class.

The paper I chose read, "Design a 10-pose cool down sequence, ending with Savasana. You want the class to be so relaxed at the end of the sequence that they don't move a muscle during Savasana."

Easy peasy! I know what my current favorite cool down sequence is, so I just used that - started with a nice reclined pigeon pose, went into square pose for some meditation, staff pose to work your entire body a little bit, a nice seated forward fold, a gentle twist, some gentle full-leg stretches, a reclined twist, and then full-on savasana.

I felt *so* comfortable up at the front of the room, and trying to keep my voice in a soothing tone made me feel just as relaxed as they were. I felt like I could have left them in savasana for much longer, but it was almost 6 o clock (quitting time), and there was still one more person to go after me!

The other sequences were not as relaxing, I'll say. Between the two classes in the morning, the sun salutations, and then the five practice scenarios, I don't think I've ever done so many downward dogs in a single day. (My shoulders sure felt like that the next day.)

As I drove home on Saturday, I started to feel the effects of the day's practice in my shoulders, and in my hips and my legs. Owie.

After dinner, I got into a hot shower with a few drops of lavender oil in the bottom of the tub, and then went to bed.

Sunday morning, I wasn't nearly as sore as I had thought I would be, but I was still feeling a little tired. I made it through about 3/4 of the gentle yoga class, and then plopped down into a restorative/supported child's pose with my blankie over my back. And it worked, I felt pretty good for the 75 minute Hatha class right after that.

Started the afternoon discussing anatomy, which I find fascinating. We spent a couple of hours talking about muscle movement, planes of movement, and then took turns getting into poses while the rest of the class dissected what muscles and joints were doing what movements. Something else to think about during my own practice, and when I'm teaching Tom yoga in the evenings now...

Then we went back into the Gita for another couple of hours. I'll save that discussion for my next post, but safe to say it was along the lines of a life-changing read for me.

What's up next? One more practice teach, then trying to set up some free classes so I can get some more experience teaching. And I have lots and lots and lots to think about for my own practice now. Layers, so many layers...

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