I'm just back from assisting Anthony, my main teacher and the owner of my yoga studio - City Yoga. As part of my path toward eventual certification (which takes something crazy like five years in my school of yoga) I have to do an apprenticeship with a certified instructor. I was only required to assist in one class per week for three months, but I dig it so much, I'm in my fifth month of assisting two classes a week. I mean the chance to lay hands on bodies and bring people some serious bliss twice a week? No brainer.
The reason I love assisting Anthony (beside the fact he's fabulous) is that his classes are always packed, so I have to work my butt off to make sure the students are aligned and out of danger. My specialty, I have now been told, is giving yummy adjustments that make people go cross eyed. I hear that moan and I know I'm doing my job.
Today I stayed after class to do backbends with Anthony. He had me doing handstands over to backbends at the stage and then helped me kick back over again. In a word, FABULOUS! My whole body just opened up and I felt utterly blissed out. Ah, a mini private class. The perks of assisting. Cool.
My yoga is hands on yoga. My very first day assisting I was doing this adjustment where I took my foot and stepped down on this guy's thigh to anchor it to the floor. He grabbed my foot and said, "No, do it like this," grabbed my foot and slammed it into his package. I just looked down at him, smiled, and dug my foot in a little deeper so he really knew I was there. The darling man never did that crap again, but I got a kick out of it. What, like a little foot to package action is gonna rattle me?
Of all of my years of taking classes and I knew I'd hit the jackpot when I found Anusara yoga. Anusara means “flowing with Grace” and is known for being the least injurious yoga out there. As the daughter of a physicist I need things to make sense. Anusara yoga makes sense to me. It insures that your body is in proper alignment when doing poses and allows you to open fully to the pose. It is also very heart oriented and after enough backbends your heart just sort of breaks wide open. It's affected my relationships, my work and my life in a big kind of way. Totally cool stuff here. I am a new teacher and still have so much to learn, but I think it's a path I need play on for a while. It just fits.
One of my goals is to teach yoga at retreats in Italy. I want to offer a really physical yoga during the day as well as a restorative yoga at night in a beautiful place. I mean yoga under the stars with a bottle of wine waiting? Now that’s my idea of heaven...