I am a mover. I am constantly fidgeting, adjusting, shifting my gaze. When I discovered that through the practice that is commonly referred to as yoga I would be able to not only find stillness while practicing, but the quiet in my mind would continue off the mat, I knew it was for me. I also knew that I needed to share this amazing practice with the world.
So, without knowing a word in Sanskrit, other than Savasana, I embarked on the 200-hour teacher training that fit within my schedule. The group of yogis that I had the honor of sharing my training with helped to shape my practice and opened my eyes to the various types of practitioners I would encounter as an instructor, and to be quite honest I was in awe of each and every one.
We began to near the end of our training and started to talk about the apprehension we were experiencing regarding teaching an actual class, not just one on the weekend for family members. This is when Emerson came to speak to our class about Karma Teachers. Having the attention issues I do I honestly could not tell you what he said in the first half of his presentation, but his energy was infectious. I knew instantly that that was the positive energy and attitude I needed to surround myself with as a new teacher.
The second I got home that night I sent Emerson an e-mail. He responded right away and next thing you know I was at the front of a mat. Fresh out of teacher training and beyond thrilled. I think I stumbled over every single left and right I had to cue that class and by the time the class settled into savasana a huge sense of relief filled me. A feeling I have never experienced since. Now when my students snuggle their shoulders onto their back and let go of all awareness of their breath I feel momentary sense of disappointment that this class and experience has come to a close, and then joy takes over. Joy for being able to lead these awesome people through something so personal as their practice.
I came to Karma Teachers completely green, so green in fact that I may have been lime green. Through the support of Emerson, the other teachers, but most importantly my students I grew so much. I am now a multi-coloured/multi-patterned yogini.
Teaching at Karma allowed me to find my voice as a teacher. At no point did I try to put on someone else’s voice. If the students wanted something different they went to another class. My students came to smile, to move, to fidget, to breathe, and most importantly to find stillness. Just as I had intended initially, I was able to share the joy I experienced (the quiet I experienced) in my practice.
I went from my one class at Karma, then added one class at a studio closer to home, then another and another and the list continues. Without the energy, smiles and open arms of Emerson I am not sure what my journey may have been. Would fear have kept me from trying?
What I do know is that now I am very happily teaching 10 regular classes a week and could not be happier. Keep up with my schedule at www.jylawrence.com