Recently I took a Power Yoga class from a newly certified yoga teacher. We sat for about 2-3 minutes where she proceeded to bring us to notice our breath and then read quickly from a book about connecting to your breath is connecting you to your soul. Then we got up and started our yoga workout complete with Sun A’s and Sun B’s, and the Black Eyed Peas.
It was jarring to say the least. When my life is being bombarded by everyone else’s demands, technology butting it’s head into every waking moment, making sure gas is in the car (at a good price) and desperately trying to find something quick and healthy to eat, the last thing I’m looking for is a checklist for my spiritual contemplation.
At break neck speeds we were ordered into a series of forward folds and back extensions that hit me like a train wreck in the middle of farmland in a sleepy mid-western town on a hot summer day. Now I’m not out of shape by any means but the idea of what felt like throwing myself around in contorted postures without attention to breath and alignment made me question the direction of yoga as our Type A’s take a hold of the ancient practice.
And maybe my body needs this. Have I gotten so comfortable with the same pace, flow and holding times in my practice that it’s time for a change? Or am I so deep in my practice that I’ve settled down from the frenetic pace of a power yoga class that has to double as workout and quiet time? Regardless, this entry point into yoga just might work as so many baby boomers are racing against the clock. Fast paced Power Yoga classes offer a valuable entry point for those who may be hesitant or terrified to begin a long and intimate relationship with their body. So go ahead do CrossFit, and Cardio-Yoga it’s a start.
For me, I suppose this is where years of practice and the art of detachment (taking yoga off the mat) come into play. Now is the time to listen, feel, be judgement free, keep trying new things and after 14 years of practice and teaching young teacher, I just might meet you here.