I had the most lovely surprise today for my Noon class: two of my students from the senior center arrived at the studio promptly at Noon. I volunteered at the senior center for a year and fell in love with that class. My decision to stop teaching there was difficult, so the opportunity to teach some of those people again was such a gift!
One of the reasons I left the Senior Center (aside from the main paring down reason) was that I had been teaching those targeted classes so long I was having difficulty teaching more intense classes. To build my repetoire I needed more exposure. I’ve been teaching these more vigorous classes for six months or so, though I’ve only suceeded at teaching at this faster pace for about three, and I’m enjoying it immensely. I still struggle because I want to comment on all the beautiful, small details of especially the simplest asana such as Tadasana, DownDog, Fierce Pose. But getting swept up in the energy of the class makes it easier to choose the one thing that will energize most of the students in that pose.
So last night and today were mentally gear stripping, and because of that have taught me a lot about teaching. Last night I had someone who hadn’t done yoga in years and someone else very new, along with my wonderful hubby, who is a natural. Prepared to teach an intense, heating, spine curving, heart expanding, hip articulating kind of class, I was thrown back to the mat, so to speak. Back to my roots, to kind, gentle but persistent attention to the smallest of detail, hints of tightness, distress, and coaxed to redirect my expectation and energy. It was the best gift a teacher could get and it reminded what yoga truly is: movement with intention breath; unified heart-mind-body; dissolution of moments breaking up time and seperating smiles; mostly yoga is meeting ourselves on the experimental laboratory of our mats, where we’re committed to remember the truths of our being, to move with love, acceptance and an exploratory sensibility.