Met up with about 20 wonderful ladies last night for a “power flow” class that basically had everyone drenched by the time we rolled into svasana. (I did forget about turning on the fans until nearly the end, however… sorry, girls)
This was a first yoga class for many of the attendees, so modification was in order. Even though they were truly in the spirit of wanting “the burn” by muscling and forcing their bodies into unfamiliar patterns, I was busy walking around them promoting “knees down”, “spine long,” “heart glides open!,”but many still resumed their practice with jaws clenched, faces contorted, or their backs rounded to protect their tight hips or hamstrings …
So many new audiences are cheerfully trying out yoga since they want the calm (and the lean bodies) that is so often promoted, but the risk of injury increases for audiences when they don’t get a clear picture of what a yoga practice really means before they take it on.
My responsibility as a yoga teacher is to help students practice ahimsa (non-violence towards others as well as themselves) and satya (truthfulness). Yet I’m also starting to recognize where I may be cutting corners and not living those words in my own life. It’s good to hold the mirror up..