Posted by Rima Thierry.
Teacher training has come to an end and wow, what an amazing three months it has been for me. Looking back, I cannot believe how much we accomplished during training, and how much I grew both personally and in my practice.
In the end, everything I suspected I would gain from teacher training proved to be true. I have a much deeper understanding of the alignment and mechanics of the yoga asanas. I have deepened my meditation practice and my understanding of yoga philosophy. I have learned how to sequence a class, I developed a daily yoga practice and I stepped outside of my comfort zone of Ashtanga and Vinyasa yoga exploring different types of yoga such as Iyengar and Kundalini. I studied yoga anatomy, and learned adjustments and modifications to help my students avoid injury and deepen their poses. I was introduced to mantras, and even attended my first (very blissful) Kirtan.
But something much more surprising and important happened over those 13 weeks. I truly experienced a transformation, and began living the “san kulpa”, or intention, I set during the initiation ceremony on the first day of training. I learned to trust myself, surrender, and be fearless.
There were many times when training got challenging, and we were given gentle reminders by our teachers to “go into the fire” or find pleasure in going outside our comfort zone. I quickly realized that the most challenging moments were also the greatest learning experiences. One of the scariest moments for me was when I was asked to teach plank pose to the entire group on the second day of training. I didn’t know if I could find the words or the courage to stand up in front of the class but I remembered my promise to let go of my fear took a deep breath and miraculously the words came streaming from my mouth. Over and over again during the 13 weeks, I reminded myself of my intention, and over and over again I surprised myself in my achievements.
The first of all the Yoga Sutras says, “Now the practice of yoga begins.” I couldn’t find a better way of summarizing the completion of teacher training. Now, the practice of yoga is truly beginning for me. When I started Pure Yoga Teacher Training, I had a love and passion for my practice but I was unsure whether I would have the courage to actually teach yoga. Now, I am confident I want to spread the joy of yoga onto others and pass the knowledge that was given to me over the past three months. I am currently teaching yoga to preschool children once a week, and I feel honored to have the privilege of opening their eyes to the beauty of yoga. The children get so excited about class, and I am amazed to here feedback from the parents like “he talks about yoga all week”- or “she came home and told me all about the meaning of “namaste”.
I hope to continue to find ways I can help the community through yoga. My hope is to follow in the footsteps of other yogis and yoginis who are making a difference in our community and are passionate about using yoga as a healing tool. For example, one of my teachers Jennifer Pastiloff, recently started an organization called Gifts and Miracles Everyday (GAME ) Yoga to give free yoga classes to children with disabilities. I am humbled by her efforts, and excited to continue to explore ways to bring yoga to people who might not otherwise have access to it, or might not seek it out themselves.
I am eternally grateful to Zobha for this amazing opportunity. Without the Grace of Giving Scholarship, teacher training would have been out of my reach. Now I have the tools to spread my love of yoga onto others and begin to repay this wonderful gift I was given.
Sending love and light to everyone at Zobha and to you, my readers. Thank you for sharing this journey with me.