Sunday, July 3, 2011

Is it my practice or your practice?

Yogatude is so ugly. People like this idea of being open but sometimes they really want validation. Which is totally cool except when it becomes something that is imposing onto other people. I find in Yoga studios and communities often, instructors who are imposing. This is one of the ugly things about Yoga. Although it is not really "Yoga" but something that people wrongfully manifest as Yoga. I find instructors who really just want people to listen to them. They want to be able to command people and have people follow what they say. What part of instructing does it become the teacher's practice more than the students? I think it can be a fine line and different for everyone.

I find this is what makes me not the greatest Yoga teacher. I truly do not want to make my classes be about me and how I am feeling and what I want to teach people but I try to mold the classes to the wants and needs of the class, which is difficult as its different everytime. Don't get me wrong I sometimes spend too much of a class in my head wondering if people like it, and maybe not enough of my energy towards the people themselves. Too much me and not enough them. Ultimately I want people to have an awesome hour to themselves and feel good afterwards. But if they can't parallel their feet in wheel pose perfectly after I mention it, am I going to keep pushing it? No. If someone can't square their hips off in Warrior I should I force their hips that way? No. Everyone's downward dog looks different and I don't believe I should make theirs look the way I want it to look or the way I want it to be. Where is the line of instructors taking the practice away from their students? On the flip side of this, like I mentioned before maybe this is what makes me OK at teaching Yoga and not great at it. I don't like to think of myself as a leader but as someone that can guide people. The importance in teaching Yoga for me is to guide people to the place where they can heal themselves.

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