In any yoga studio, the instructors have the ability to make or break your experience. Your instructor can either help you grow and explore the depths of your practice, or s/he can deter you from ever attending another yoga class again. If an instructor is truly there to guide her/his students throughout their yogic journey, they will do whatever it takes to ensure every experience on your mat is a positive one.
It can sometimes be difficult for an instructor to express the things he or she wants you to know. Always keep in mind the following messages each time you unroll your mat.
Your mat is your safe space.
The studio is a judgment-free zone. Each student is practicing for their own reasons–therapy, rehabilitation, relaxation, focus. Whatever the reason, introspection is important. If you would prefer your instructor not manually adjust your posture, let him/her know. Every individual’s attention is solely on their own practice. Students are often wary of trying something new or are concerned about falling out of a pose that they fail to fully reap the benefits of their session. Do whatever best serves you–not the person next to you.
Practice makes progress.
Practice means consistency, dedication and failure. Yoga is an ongoing process without a defined endpoint. While setting goals for yourself is important, there are always new areas to explore. There are endless possibilities for growth and self-exploration. Think of every class as a chance to learn something new, and consciously apply those lessons in your next class.
There is no “right” or “wrong” in our practice. Yoga looks different on everybody. Understanding how and when to apply certain principles is all a part of the process.
Use the props.
Blocks, straps and bolsters are tools to improve and deepen your movements. The use of a prop can change the way a pose feels in your body and will help you achieve proper alignment in certain postures. You will find yourself achieving full poses more quickly when progressing with props as compared to reaching or forcing your body into them. If you are unsure of when and/or how to use a prop, ask your instructor!
Talk to us.
We want to connect with you as long as you are comfortable doing so. Tell us why your’e here. Discuss your goals and limitations with us. Be as open with us as you’d like. After all, yoga is an invitation to release whatever is weighing heavily on you.
…from everything except your body, mind and breath. Leave the phone in your car or silenced in your bag. A ringing phone is quite possibly the worst distraction for not only you, but everyone else practicing.