Tuesday, February 5, 2013

What the Teacher Says

A few months back I asked a client of mine whether or not she meditated. She said, "I do yoga."
"Not the same thing," I replied. Don't get me wrong I think asana, the physical practice of yoga, is SO HELPFUL, but it doesn't offer the same answers, clarity, and stillness that sitting practice does.

Some of us who have been practicing asana for a long time can be even more in our heads during yoga class. Those of us with injuries, opinions, or a teacher training under our belt can spend a whole class making decisions about what not to do, what to do instead, and why.

It takes judgment and insight to opt not to do what the teacher says because you think it's not be the best thing for your body; I encourage that discernment in my students. It's a slippery slope though, and I've slid down the whole dang thing. If you're like me and getting out of your head isn't the all-time-easiest-thing to do, yoga class could become just another venue to attach to your stories, likes, dislikes, and other reek-of-ego type things.

When I first moved to Taos, I packed my schedule pretty quickly and with yoga class options more slim, Yogaglo saved me. Taking classes online is great, but without the support of the other students in the room, I am SO much less likely to do everything the teacher says. My preferences started to get even more preferency.

Lately I have been practicing just doing what the teacher says. Online and in class, whatever the teacher says, I do it. It feels really good; like how yoga used to feel, so mind-bogglingly opening. Whether or not you're a yoga student, the smartest person in the world, or an Olympic athlete, there must be some arena in your life where you can allow yourself to trust "the expert." Listen to your body, I'm not suggesting you do anything that might hurt, or prolong an injury. But otherwise, give it a go! How 'bout sometimes stepping out of your head and allowing someone else to be in charge?

You might love it or hate it, but probably, you'll learn something, even if it's just a little something about yourself.


MS said...

I like it when you write about me.

Ashleigh Beyer said...

Thanks so much for the feedback MS! :)

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