Last weekend I started my first weekend of yoga teacher training. It’s divided into 10 weekend sessions over the course of a year, with assignments and personal yoga practice making up the rest. After 2 days of getting up at 6am and attending 8 hours of lectures each day I was exhausted, but exhilarated at the same time. It was an intensive on the cardiovascular system, working with children and teenagers, backbends, and the anatomy of the neck, chest and shoulders. Even with the depth of knowledge displayed by the teachers, I’m a bit daunted, and I feel that even when I’ve finished the course I will still be at the very beginning of my journey!
Every so often I tend to develop what I like to call a “mini obsession”. I’ll get interested in a subject (sometimes something completely banal or just silly), then try to learn everything I can about it until I get bored and move on to the next thing. I feel I have this to some degree with yoga, though I’m hoping I can sustain this obsession for the rest of my life! As it stands though, I’m now following a large array of websites and podcasts all dedicated to yoga, and hopefully in the future I’ll get the chance to share them.
One podcast I’ve been listening to recently is J Brown Yoga Talks. This is a great podcast, and every week he interviews a different teacher from the world of yoga. There have been some great conversations with yoga luminaries such as Mark Whitwell, or Bernie Clark, but one I found very powerful was a conversation with Diane Bruni.
Diane Bruni was an Ashtanga teacher for many years when she injured herself very badly - an injury she attributed to the heavy duty practices of that style. She tried to raise awareness of the inherent danger of some of these practices and was duly shunned by the community. Soon later she was diagnosed with breast cancer. It’s a powerful story, and I think you should listen if you get the chance.
The reason this struck a chord is because I it made me mindful of the duty of care you have to your students as a teacher, and to your own body as a practitioner. I think I tend to push myself as far as I think I can go in my own practice, and sometimes I have to admit there is some ego and pride attached to that. I think that the same thing could possibly apply as a teacher (though having no teaching experience that is just a guess), so it’s something for me to ponder over the next few months.
This post has been a bit of a meander through the current state of my mind, but I was hoping that as I progress through this course, I can start applying what I’ve learned and put it into this blog. You should be hearing a lot more from me soon!