Finding Santosha

Finding Santosha means finding contentment.  I think finding Santosha is my test this week because I felt like I was mediocre after my weekend in “Yoga School”, which is what I call our Teacher Training program at Yoga-Movement.  It was my sixth yoga teacher training, and I must say, I am not only pooped, but completely overwhelmed.

Beautiful sounding chimes

Saturday, our class started out with a Sanskrit quiz.  Yoga is an ancient practice, written in the ancient language of Sanskrit.  Last month in our fifth class, we had a wonderful teacher, Connie Habash, teach us the language of Sanskrit.  Sanskrit is a far simpler language than English to learn so it was very interesting.  The ancient practice of yoga uses the Sanskrit language.  The poses, or asana’s for the most part have a Sanskrit name.  So this week, we had a quiz on Sanskrit.  I can’t say I aced the quiz, but I felt pretty good about it when I was done.

Some teachers choose to call the asana’s in English only probably to make yoga more user-friendly, but I like the Sanskrit name.

Next  our class was split into groups and we were assigned a series of Standing Poses that we had to teach to our fellow students.  We had a lot of fun as a group effort, but it was a little nerve-wracking since we weren’t expecting this and we had about 15 minutes to prepare. The day’s agenda said “Teaching of Standing Poses”.  I thought this meant instruction from out teachers, not instruction to my fellow students!  But we all figured it out and winged it as best we could.  There was no criticism from out fellow students, only a few instructions from out teacher, Dennis Eagen.

I noticed that our schedule for Sunday also included “Teaching of Balancing poses”.  At our break later that day, I asked our teacher, Dennis Eagen, if he could assign the poses  to us in advance so we prepare for the presentation on Sunday.  So, Dennis accommodated my request and gave us our assignments.  We each had to teach our asana for 10 minutes.  This was an individual event!

My assignment was Parivrtta Parsvakonasana or Revolved Side Angle Pose.

Parivrtta Parsvkonasana

This is not a simple pose.  In order to get into this pose, you need a few warm ups.  I’d like to think that I was an over achiever, but everyone in the class seemed to take their pose seriously as well.  I was so impressed by my classmates and their fabulous asana presentation.

The presentations were really, really good, but I seemed to work myself up and worry and when I finally presented, I lost my sense of humor and became a very serious person.  I wonder, will I always be this serious, or will I eventually calm down and let my sense of humor sneak back in?  I even stopped in the middle of my series and asked how much time I had.  I decided to cut one of my asanas out of the series, because I was afraid it was too intense.  I wrote my series down the night before and practiced it, then I practiced it at least three times Sunday morning before class.

The critiques by my class mates were so nice, but I kept feeling uncomfortable and thinking they were all being kind.  Dennis said it kind of seemed like a vinyasa flow.  I didn’t mean to do a vinyasa flow, but if it was a vinyasa flow, it was a nice and slow vinyasa flow.  To tell the truth, Vinyasa Flow is almost my least favorite kind of yoga, with the exception of Bikram Yoga (that’s the hot hot yoga).

Maybe I just had first time jitters, but one thing I do know, I can’t wait to see the agenda for our next class in September.  I’m thinking my asana presentation can only get better.

I’ll work on finding Santosha now that I’ve finished my first official teaching assignment, but it may take me a few days.


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