What do I mean by my teaching place? I am not referring to just the physical place I’ll be teaching, but also what I will bring to my students, the type of class I’ll teach in terms of type of yoga as well as what I have to offer.
When I first considered teacher training almost a year ago, I had a lot of uncertainties floating through my mind – would I be a good enough teacher, I’m flexible, but I don’t go to a power class and rock out in hand stand and six other arm balances and get all psyched. In fact, most days I can’t even maintain headstand. When I realized YogaSource offered a Gentle Teacher Training track I knew I had found my training program and was excited to learn more about Yin and Restorative yoga. I was certain, given my introverted nature and contentedness with silence, that those were going to be where I best fit as as a teacher and could offer the most.
Enter Level 1 of teacher training – 7 days, 10 hours a day, plus homework….no yin, no restorative, all “gentle” vinyasa. I say “gentle” because our teacher knew we were all experienced practitioners and, while options to down level the poses were offered, they weren’t often taken. As we began to practice teach segments of a full practice that week – core asanas, standing asanas, and eventually a full sequence, I felt drawn to the rhythmic nature of the gentle vinyasa practice. Inhales, exhales, detailed cues to improve the posture of the pose, a focus on moving with the breath. This connection to teaching this practice wasn’t what I was expecting.
After teaching our final class, I had pretty much settled into the idea of teaching gentle with about 10 – 15 minutes of yin poses leading up to final savasana.
Enter this past weekend of Restorative Teacher Training. I love it and think THIS is where I want to be. So maybe I’ll teach a variety of practices.
But, when I truly think about what I want to teach and how I want to teach self-healing and self-acceptance, if I could design a practice for the general public that provides physical and mental benefits my ideal practice would be teaching what I’ll call a Gen-Yin-Torative class. Ninety minutes of gentle movement, caring for the nervous and immune systems and being in a place of healing and peace.
Preparing this type of class would present a challenge in striking the right balance, yet would be exciting to continue to develop and modify that balance with time and as the energy of the class dictates. Yesterday, as we taught and took a 60 minute restorative session, it felt like not nearly enough time. Today, sitting in two restorative poses for a total of less than 30 minutes, was just what I needed.
Time will tell what type of practice I’ll teach and where, and I am excited for the journey, and to bring a calm oasis of peace to my future students.