Yoga Teacher Training Recap

I. AM. DONE.

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Last day with my instructor, Rocky Heron.

Yoga teacher training is a long, intensive process. 200 classroom hours, hours upon hours of homework, and the physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion is unlike anything I’ve ever been through. Click on the links to read my previous teacher training posts (YogaYoga RevisitedRound 3).

Yoga School - Round 4

Obligatory First Day of Yoga School Pic – Round 4

My brain is mush, and I’m still having a hard time believing it’s done. Thankfully, my body reminds me what I just went through every time I roll over.

IMG_6996This last week was an especially difficult one. I felt all the feelings – excitement, sadness, anxiety, relief, stress… you name it, I felt it. Excitement to be back with my friends, sadness it was over, anxiety about the final, relief it was coming to an end, and stress to finish necessary requirements while completing daily homework and running off 3-4 hours of sleep. Whew!

We spent our days practicing yoga (duh), learning/discussing LOTS of anatomy, practicing alignment cues on our peers, and learning about yoga philosophy.

Rocky showing us his best isometric contraction.

Rocky showing us his best isometric contraction.

The yoga practices you do in a teacher training are completely different than yoga you would generally practice everyday. For example, one day we worked on backbends…for 2½ hours. Holy spinal extensors!

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 7.44.11 AMAnother day was working on forward folds. A forward fold doesn’t sound so bad, right? Well we did them for 3 hours. I was able to release my hamstrings more that day than I ever have.

Another day, we did a 90 minute self-led practice. Everyone in the room was doing different things. It was the longest practice I’ve ever put myself through on my own.

IMG_7056The last day we did 2½ hours of arm balances and inversions. My serratus anterior, shoulders, and obliques are still talking to me after this class.

IMG_7055I am now certified through YOGAMAZÉ, founded by Noah Mazé in Los Angeles. Our teacher training was led by Rocky Heron, a YOGAMAZÉ Emissary. To receive our certification we were assessed on teaching methodology, anatomy & physiology, yoga philosophy, and practicum.

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The day I turned in my work. Ah…what a relief.

By the end of the week, we had to have all necessary assignments complete and then were “graded” on teaching an hour long sequence to our peers. The day we had to teach my nerves had nearly completely subsided. I think this was solely due to the pure exhaustion I was feeling, not because I felt prepared. I don’t think I would have ever felt prepared for that moment.

I am so grateful for the group of people I was placed with to complete this training. I can’t put into words what happens to you over 200 hours, but the people that surround you play a huge part in your sanity. I am so thankful for each and every one of them.

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Namaste’ Y’all.

The last week especially was a roller coaster ride of emotions. By mid-week we were all slightly delirious, so I’m sure that played a role…

We laughed together.

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Clare bear.

Sometimes cried together.

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Sweet Mona.

Celebrated each other.

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Happy Birthday, Adi! Yes, yogis eat donuts. We eat ALL the donuts.

Celebrated our instructor/mentor.

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Rocky in all of his new Oklahoma gear.

IMG_7058Relied on one another.

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Last closing circle.

And supported each another.

So much love and appreciation in this picture.

So much love and appreciation in this picture.

It’s now been 3 days since I finished, and I’m still not quite back to normal. My body is exhausted and I still have all my yoga homework laid out on the dining room table like I have things to finish. Maybe it will sink in soon.

IMG_700615 months ago when I signed up for this journey, I still wasn’t sure I wanted to put in the time, energy, and effort to complete a 200 hour teacher training. Looking back, I can’t imagine not doing it! If this is something you’re on the fence about yourself, or have any questions regarding a 200 hour teacher training, please let me know! I would love to answer any questions or tell you about my experience a little bit more.

From a now official yoga teacher,

Cassie

Yoga School – Round 3

“The only thing that is constant is change.” – Greek philosopher Heraclitus

Change is good. Uncomfortable, but good. I’m a planner, so when something doesn’t go the way I have it mapped out, I usually have a minor meltdown. Change brings up insecurities, uncertainties, and some serious stress for me.

I’m working through this – releasing the familiar, the comfortable, and embracing the new. This last week was a test of embracing the new.

When I began yoga teacher training I started with Briohny Smyth and Dice Iida-Klein, Bryce Yoga. I completed 100 classroom hours with them, and every bit of homework to complete my 200 hour training. With only 100 classroom left to go, I was feeling pretty comfortable with where I was sitting.

The yoga group.  I can't wait to spend 150 more hours with these incredible people.

Then change happened.

Through a series of events I’m still not clear on, we were told we wouldn’t be completing our remaining 100 hours with Bryce Yoga. That was a kick in the gut.

The studio brought in a new yogi, Rocky Heron, to complete our remaining 100 hours. Rocky is Noah Mazé’s right hand man, and he is an instructor at YOGAMAZÉ in Los Angeles. The Noah Maze’ method and form of teaching is a complete 180 from our previous training. Because this is a completely new system, we are doing ALL of the work for their 200 hour Teacher Training, but condensing it into a month and a half and only 100 classroom hours. WHAT?! I was feeling a little overwhelmed before I even arrived last Thursday.

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Homework pre-training.

Day 1 was fun!  It was so great to be back with my fellow teacher trainees. Yoga all day will never get old. Rocky is a tremendous teacher. He’s large in stature and knowledge. At 6’6″ he’s the biggest yogi I’ve ever seen.

Rocky Heron and Noah Maze'

Rocky Heron and Noah Maze’.

Day 2 was hard. My body was fatigued, my head was swimming with new information, and my ability to focus took a nose dive.

Sequencing

We ran out of room on the white board, so Rocky took to the mirrors.

The more I learn, the more I realize I don’t know – it was such an overwhelming and discouraging feeling. We worked through lots of anatomy and cueing. Thankfully Bella agreed to model external rotation and abduction in the hip joint.

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Ahhh, now I get it. Thanks, Bella.

By Day 3, I set my insecurities aside, and decided it would be a great time to embrace the change. The YOGAMAZE’ style of teaching is clear, concise, and logical. It is the nuts and bolt of yoga. No crazy sequencing, no flowery language/cueing; they want us to leave with the ability to teach yoga poses, and teach them well. GENIUS!

Rocky teaching trikonasana.

Rocky teaching Trikonasana.

Me teaching Marychiasana III to the group.

Me teaching Marichyasana III to the group.

And as always, by Day 4 I didn’t want to leave. Shocker.

Doing my best at looking glamourous. Unfortunately I look I'm trying to eat Rocky's head.

Doing my best at looking glamourous. Unfortunately I look like I’m trying to eat Rocky’s head.

The group. Happy face.

The group. Happy to be back together.

My last training module will be in the middle of January. I will be a RYT 200 hour yoga teacher in a little over a month. CRAZY! It’s been a long short 11 months.

I adore this group from the bottom of my heart. Lots of love, friends.

“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” –Lao Tzu


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