My First Yoga Class

I was 20 years old walking into my first yoga class. I set up the gym’s mat in the first row, next to the door (just incase I wanted to escape.. just kidding). Actually, there wasn’t any more room in the back of the room, so I was forced to be up front. Everyone was doing these unique stretching poses, the instructor had not yet arrived. I just did a couple forward bends since that’s all I really knew and maybe some shoulder roles too. Once the instructor came into class right on time she asked if anyone was new, for some reason I decided not to raise my hand, perhaps I felt like I didn’t want to keep the class from starting. If she had come in a little sooner I probably would have raised my hand. I have since then taken many yoga classes and most yoga instructors are there checking you in or will see a new face in the class and will ask you personally as the other students are doing their stretching. I feel it’s more personal that way and it feels much more comfortable then asking in front of the class right as the practice is supposed to begin. Five minutes into class my wrists were hurting so badly I decided right there and then this is not for me. But, I soon realized this must be a ‘beginner thing’. I’m sure if I had raised my hand at the beginning she would have been able to give me modifications or instructions to release the pressure off the wrists. Once we started heating up and going through these poses I’ve never heard of, I could see why people enjoyed it, it was a good workout. I was able to sweat and feel the muscles burning without it being a loud and high intensity workout. I was so focused on the poses she was demonstrating and thinking about if I was doing it right, I wasn’t focusing on the breathing. Therefore my breath was out of control.  I had assumed by now she would realize this was my first yoga class based on how I was breathing and forming these poses but, she never said anything during or after the class. Perhaps she had so many students she couldn’t recall who is new and who isn’t. I still went a few times after that but I sadly decided to stick to my spinning classes. For some reason, I didn’t seem to enjoy yoga right away and stuck to others forms of exercise. That’s until I tried another yoga studio a couple years later and I fell in love with it. I knew I had finally found something I was passionate about when it was a year later and I had been consistently going to classes week after week. I typically like to change things up, so for me to not get bored with yoga, I knew it would be a part of my life forever. It was the instructors at this particular studio that made the experience wonderful. However, I soon realized, I was able to practice yoga with any kind of teaching method, since it is more about my own practice and the affects it has on my body and mind. Each instructor is unique and they all taught me something useful in my practice, which will bring me to my next post. – NC

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