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Deepening Your Yoga Practice

Students often approach me after class when they are in the yoga zone. That is the place where they not only feel “blissed out” but where they allow themselves to be more vulnerable. They ask me questions about poses, meditation, breath work (which yogis call pranayama), as well as the tenets of yoga including non-excess, non-possessiveness and more. These are usually a result of poses we did, a quote I read or something I reminded them of in class – basically all topics that there is insufficient time to cover in detail.

To answer questions and satiate curiosity about the deeper practices of yoga, I recommend various options. Although these are listed from least to most expensive, the benefit far outweighs the cost for the larger investment.

There are many very good books and videos available. Ask your teachers to recommend some.

Sign up for private sessions with a beloved instructor. This gives you the undivided attention of the teacher for an hour, allowing you to work on whatever you need or desire. Although having a private tutor for an hour is a great way to learn, it is a more expensive option.

Consider going to an ashram for a weekend or weeklong program. If India isn’t in the budget, consider going to Kripalu in Massachusetts, Himalayan Institute in Pennsylvania or Omega New York. All offer great workshops and the opportunity for a nice getaway.

Take a yoga teacher training (YTT). You don’t have to want to become a teacher; you just have to want to deepen your practice. Make sure the school you are considering is certified through Yoga Alliance and be sure to take some classes with the primary teacher. Attend an orientation session, ask to see the course syllabus and the books that are used, meet the primary teachers, inquire about their experience and ask to speak with former students.

Most yoga students who start to learn more begin to realize that what is covered in a regular yoga class is just the tip of the iceberg.

Maggie Knoedler Rueda, E-RYT 500 is the owner of Journey of Yoga LLC in Simsbury and the director of their 200-hour YTT program. The next YTT begins in September, but an overview session for YTT is May 13 at 7:30pm. Call 860-680-1482 to register or visit JourneyOfYoga.com.

 

 

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