Each week for my classes, I put together a new playlist and a new intention. Not only does this keep class fresh for my students, but keeps me present for the classes I teach. I always go with an intention and playlist that speaks to me for that week, depending on whatever may be going on in my own life, on or off my yoga mat. This week, I’ve made my intention for class to be Acceptance.
Accept where you are in this moment. Accept where you are in your yoga practice. Know that you are exactly where you need to be. Acknowledge how your body feels today and honor it. Give it the love, attention and self care it deserves.
So here’s the back story on why I chose to focus on Acceptance this week in my classes. Acceptance is a theme that keeps coming up for me over and over again, both on and off my mat. I’m learning to trust that I am exactly where I need to be and learning to enjoy each moment as they happen.
I’m more than halfway done with Yoga Sculpt Teacher Training at CorePower Yoga. I only have three sessions left before I start Extensions for Sculpt. I can’t believe how fast this teacher training has gone by! I feel like it just started last weekend! Like with any teacher training I’ve done so far, I’ve learned a lot about the yoga, but I’ve also learned a lot about myself and my own yoga practice.
Just as I’m getting comfortable teaching one format of yoga, (I completed my Hot Power Fusion internship at CorePower Yoga last Thursday – Whoo Hoo!! – which means I’m officially a teacher at the studio instead of an intern!), here comes a new format with new postures, new cues to memorize and a whole new way of teaching. I’m accepting that there’s no such thing as a perfect Teacher Training, no matter how many hours of practice and study you put into it. I’ve been spending a fair amount of time trying to memorize the new postures and cues. The teachers who took Power Yoga Teacher Training and are now going through the Sculpt TT have it made because the first portion of class – Sun A and Sun B – are the exact same postures and cues in the C1 classes they teach. Since I did my training in the Hot Power Fusion format, I’m having to retrain my brain to cue a slightly different Sun A and a whole new Sun B. There are no backbends or baby backbends in the Sun A for Sculpt and instead of finishing out Sun A with a Crouch and Curl like we do in HPF, there’s now a High to Low Plank/Chaturanga. There are no Chaturangas anywhere in a HPF class!
Part of the requirements for Sculpt TT is that we have to take seven Yoga Sculpt classes, six C1 classes and observe three Sculpt classes during training. With each C1 and Sculpt class I take, I feel myself getting stronger both physically and mentally. Physically, my upper body is getting strong with all of the High to Low Plank/Chaturangas. Mentally, the memorization of the sequence, postures and cues is getting solidified both in my brain and body with each class I take along with all of the study time I’ve been putting in so far.
I’m learning to accept that there is no such thing as a perfect yoga teacher. Just like with practicing yoga, teaching yoga is a lifelong process. I’m always going to be learning, improving and challenging myself to get out of my comfort zone. I’ve given myself the space and permission to make mistakes. Sure, some classes I teach are stronger than others. Then there are some classes I teach where I feel like I’m a mess and all over the place. I’m learning to accept all of this – the good and the not so great – as part of my process of becoming a yoga teacher.
In the 30+ yoga classes I’ve taught so far since January, I’ve learned to accept that there’s no such thing as a perfect class. Stuff happens, no matter how prepared I think I am for teaching a class. I’ve had students come into class late, a student’s cellphone going off in the middle of a posture, someone fart out loud in class, the playlist I know I downloaded earlier not fully download by the time I started class, the volume not work like it should, the music not come on at all until 15 minutes into class, messed up a few rights and lefts countless times and forgotten to cue a posture all together and wondered why I reached Final Savasana a little early. Then there was one time when I blanked on what came next in the sequence. Luckily one of the students kicked their leg up into Three-Legged Dog, triggering my memory and allowed me to continue cueing the rest of class. Whew!
Even though I teach the same sequence in each class, every class I teach is different. The key is being able to accept whatever challenge might be thrown my way and roll with it. My teaching style and capabilities of teaching yoga are exactly where they need to be in this very moment and I’m enjoying each class I teach, mistakes and all.