This past week I was talking to a few friends about the evolution of our yoga practice as individuals and as a society. I have been on quite the adventure in the past few months and I can feel not only myself but the vibrational energy around me beginning to change how I teach and how I practice the art of yoga.
Yoga is such a beautiful practice and every moment is uniquely individual to YOU. It comes from within the ancient sutras but spans across time and space to become exactly what you need it to be in that moment.
The same is true of your teaching if you are a yoga instructor. We all have classes when we know we are only on autopilot. During this autopilot class, we gave what we had but what we had was a terrible, horrible, no-good day that turned into a mediocre yoga class at best. We tried to separate out our feelings and emotions from teaching but there are days when that is seemingly impossible.
Then there are the beautiful, glorious days when we are PERFECT. Spot on. We know exactly where we are taking our students, we feel their energy as they feel ours coming through us. Something shifts and everything in that class and in that moment becomes perfection.
As a yoga instructor some people think you are instantly an enlightened being. They believe you graduate from your 200 hour teacher training with a packet on how to become Buddha. Untrue. We all have bad days and we try our very best to conceal them for you so that you are able to fully enjoy your practice and not wonder if the teacher at the front of the room will crack because of her flat tire and lack of coffee. We as instructors have days where we don’t feel it, it isn’t perfect, you didn’t love the class…. but as I also mentioned we have perfect and beautiful days. All this alongside the wonderful regular teaching days that fill our hearts with joy.
Last night was one of those perfect nights. I had a playlist made of gold, an amazing flow full of three yoga styles and a hugely open and grateful heart. Friends were in class, a pregnancy announced and a community of practice, breath and beauty unfolded. It was heavenly, and yet it was completely different from what I defined as heavenly just over a year ago as a teacher.
As a vinyasa and power teacher by trade, I built a non-profit that caters to gentle yoga. I knew I needed to begin to change my practice and throughout the past year, I have studied energy work, crystal bowl healings, prana flow, chakras, thai massage and assisting and most importantly I have discovered the power of Kundalini yoga within my own practice. For months I would arrive on my mat in a tiny studio where I only knew one other student in class. I would unroll my mat each time saying I wasn’t completely sure I understood or even liked Kundalini yoga….but I was there. I faithfully arrived on my mat each day and awaited the bliss I felt upon leaving class. It took months for me to begin to integrate bits of this practice into my own heart and even longer before I took a handful of kriyas and turned them into asanas in a powerful prana flow.
The Kundalini practice alongside my current 500 hour prana flow has begun an evolution in my practice. I can feel myself beginning to shift and move. I can physically feel the junk within me beginning to leave me as I prepare to add in beautiful new flows, energy and energetic alignment. At first I thought I was one of the only ones who noticed. I would mention to my students that we were trying something new, slowly bringing in a new prana flow move I learned over a teacher training weekend or a chakra alignment after a powerful private class with Jacqui Bonwell. They noticed as much as I did but it was a subtle shift and a tiny movement.
Last night, I received three messages thanking me for class as well as this powerful message from a friend:
“It’s beautiful watching your teaching evolve.”
It was one of those messages that kicked me in the gut. I knew that something had shifted and that I was on a beautiful journey and someone had called me out on it. It was such a powerful message because it made me feel strong and beautiful. Understanding that I can shift my teaching style and my perspective in life while continuing to have students, friends and family support me.
Change is such a scary word. I am a power vinyasa teacher (or I was) and to define myself as anything but seemed nerve wrecking. But I am no long JUST a power yoga teacher. I integrate kundalini, prana flow, chakras, massage through assisting, energetic alignment and so much more. I give my heart and soul in each class, hoping that one student will resonate with my words and flip their perspective, take a deep breath or find peace wherever they are in that given moment.
I realized last night that I have nothing to fear. As scary as change can be, I’m right where I need to be and it’s perfect.
As for that playlist, I will list is below. Please leave a comment with a favorite JAMMIN yoga song you would love to hear or a moment of change in your own practice. I would love to hear from you!!
Sending you love, love, love.
Playlist — Jammin’ Weekend Unwind
Bom Bom Shiva – Bonnie Argo
Africa (cottonbelly remix) – Tapis Rouge Cirque du Soleil
Adorn – Kaleidoscope Dream-Miguel
Tonight – John Legend
Diamonds – Rhianna
Clarity – Zedd
Cinema (Skrillex Remix) – Benny Benassi
We Can’t Stop – Miley Cyrus
Anything Could Happen – Ellie Goulding
Glowing – Nikki Williams
Sail – AWOLNATION
Love is Blindness – Great Gatsby Jack White
Feel it All Around – Washed Out
Over the Love – Great Gatsby Lana Del Ray
Teardrop – Massive Attack