Except in yoga. Yoga is where I learned to process those emotions, to acknowledge them and let them go. At my studio, we often joke about the "yoga mumbo jumbo," our affectionate term for the spiritual and emotional lessons we give and take through our practice.
To me, a pose only feels truly authentic when I know why I'm practicing it. What is the lesson I should learn from the asana? As a teacher, when I approach class planning from this standpoint--by starting with why--I nearly always end up with a class I'm proud of.
So in planning this week's class I turned to my emotions. And lately, I've felt conflicted. One of my dearest friends is, at this very moment, moving 2,000 miles away from here. I am thrilled--over the moon--for her and the opportunity she has for herself and her family. But I am also deeply saddened that I won't get to see her nearly as often. The two of us have talked (a little... she's not particularly touchy feel-y either) about that conflict--the excitement and apprehension of such a big move.
So that's where I started planning my class this week. Excitement and apprehension. The need to feel secure balanced with the need to take a risk. I needed a balance pose where I could root into the earth but still engage my core and open my heart.
I settled on Natarajasana.
|My friend and teacher training classmate Sarah in Natarajasana|
I chose Natarajasana because it requires strength, flexibility, an open heart, and a little bit of grace. Natarajasana allows me--and my students--to find the inner strength to open our hearts and let them fly.