I have taken for granted the ease and simplicity with which my teachers past and present have delivered many a rejuvenating and inspiring practice to me. I have been unaware that in the 1-1.5 hours I am sweating it out on the mat, yoga has been handed to me on a silver platter lightly garnished with pearls of wisdom, physiological corrections and spiritual goodness. Oh how I naive I was in thinking teaching yoga would be a piece of cake!
Let's begin in Tadasana. Theoretically speaking, it's just feet together, standing tall...or is it? Here I am talking myself through a class and already I'm seeing stars trying to explain what needs to be working, tucked, felt, engaged, experienced! It ain't Samadhi I tell you! And then there's the rest of the sun salutes... cold sweats, awkward pauses, pseudo- spiritual nonsense and we're only in Chatturanga. By the end of 3 rounds of Sun Salutes A I'm wondering where I am going with this. Then we reach the standing poses and I'm feeling like Mussolini commanding his troops, barking orders and hearing panic inflect my voice. This was not what I signed up for.
|' Just get into Warrior I! No! With your right, I mean left leg.. and your hip, I mean arm..gah!!'|
Say three things or less in a pose. That was one of the tips imparted to us by our lovely teacher Rebecca. Three things, make them count. If I say the words ' breathe' or 'draw attention to your breath' or 'inhale, exhale' one more time I might just explode. Saying any of those variations already counts as an instruction, so technically it's 2 things or less in a pose. Even then, I throw alignment jargon at my 'student' and the whole practice just ends up boring, repetitive and thoroughly uninspiring. I know how I want my student to feel at the end of the class, but navigating the tricky entrances/ exits/ principles of each asana is a tactical nightmare in its own right.
|Get thee to Samadhi!|
This leaves me to my conclusion. I have no idea how to teach Yoga. I can do it, but I ain't Moses and if I were, my people would not be ending up in the promise land. They'll probably end up in some recycling dump sorting out plastic bottles from egg shells and having the odd bird crap on their head.
Om Shanti. Lol.