During this 200 hours YTT training, I learnt a lot of knowledge of yoga, such as asanas, sanskrit word, pranayama, meditation, yamas, niyamas, mudra, muscles, bones, lesson plans and so on. Before joining this training, my impression of yoga is only the postures (asanas).
I started my yoga by reading a book and watching the video and I only learnt the aerial yoga for one year. I am not very experienced in practicing asanas so I feel stressful when my progress is quite slow. After the physical practice in the studio, I learnt what is the balance, alignment, technique, caution of wrong posture and adjustment. Knowing the correct alignment, techniques and cautions do help me to prevent the future injury while doing yoga. I am most impressed of my first sirsasana (headstand), pincha mayurasana (armstand), chaturanga dandasana (four limb staff pose), kakasana (crow pose) and parivrita kakasana (side crow pose).
It is quite amazing after learning the anatomy and physiology. For example, when you see a person who has the anterior pelvic tilt, he may suffer in back pain and he can improve his postures and relieve his back pain by strengthening and stretching the muscles.
While I was attending the aerial yoga, we did the meditation and shavasana at the beginning and end of lessons. I was curious that the teacher asked me to close my eyes in a seated position and supine position. I forced myself to close the eyes but I kept thinking what’re the job tasks I need to resolve, what I want to eat for my lunch. Now, I knew why we do the meditation and shavasana and I had my first meditation experience in this training! I felt I have the awareness of my body, it is a gap between fall asleep and conscious and the meditation makes me more peaceful. My tip is gazing between the eyebrows while closing the eyes and focusing on breathing. I need more time to explore and experience what’s the benefit of the meditation for my body, mental and spiritual.
In the Eight Limbs of Yoga, yamas and niyamas are the ethical guidelines for our life’s journey, not only the yoga journey. The daily practice of aligning our thoughts, behaviors, and actions with these personal guidelines can be difficult and challenging. Practicing the yamas and niyamas should be approached slowly over many years.
The awareness of the gunas tells us whether we are genuinely moving forward in life, running in place, or losing our way. Sattva refers to pure, the more sattvic your nature is, the more drawn you are to love, compassion, kindness, and attachment to happiness. We can eat more sattvic foods eg. fresh, nutrients, organically grown and light cooking to increase our vitality, energy and joy. Raja refers to passion, the person who has more desirous and full of attachment. The characterized of raja people is workaholics and restless. They may eat less sour, spicy, bitter foods such as garlic, onions, snacks, heavily spiced, tea, coffee etc. Tamas means darkness, and the person is dullness, inactivity, and they will feel a short-lived happiness, materialism. The tamasic foods are the stale, tasteless, putrid, rotten, impure, overripe or unripe fruits, canned foods, fermented, burned, fried, reheated. Tamas makes us stop and rest (which can be seen as the past), rajas makes us move forward (which can be seen as the future) and sattva makes us clarity and wisdom (which can be seen as the present). We play around these three gunas in our life and we can observe what’s the state are we in, and try to move from rajas and tamas toward sattva.
Yoga is not about touching your toes, this is what you learn about yourself on the way down. – Jigar Gor
Enjoy your yoga journey 🙂