As part of their teacher training, we ask our trainees to write a blog post sharing their thoughts on their experience, or a favourite topic that comes up during the course.
Below are words from Joshua, one of our lovely trainees nearing the end of his 200hr yoga teacher training with Yoga Quota.
Thank you Joshua for sharing your experience with us!
I have loved yoga since I first attended class in the autumn of 2015. At first I saw each class as exercise - a distraction from the stresses of undergraduate study. One session a week became two, then three, four, and five. Before long, I was in the studio every day of the week. In the space, I found peace. Yoga is the foundation stone of mental and physical health, and of well-being and happiness. And I couldn’t get enough.
And yet, my journey has not been linear. Finishing university and trying to establish myself as a functional adult has been difficult. At times I forget the importance of yoga to mental equanimity, and days and weeks pass between classes and my mat begins to gather dust.
Then I return to my practice, and I feel the stresses melt away. The blur of everyday life is punctuated to moments of effortlessness, and of stillness. This does not mean that I have abandoned a dynamic asana practice, but that yoga offers moments of softness and ease which are mentally and spiritually invigorating. And that is much more powerful than any single pose or posture.
Yoga is a mental exercise. It encourages us to turn away from distraction. During my vinyasa class I think about stilling psychological turbulence, and making smooth my breathing and thinking. By silencing destructive thoughts, I can nurture those constructive aspects of my psyche. Some days I feel I achieve this to a greater extent; I take a breath and stop myself from writing that passive aggressive email or else I forgive my flatmates for breaking yet another one of my expensive wine glasses. Other days are more challenging. Through it all, yoga is my constant. The quality of my movement and breath tells me when I’m on good physical and mental form, and when I’m neglecting proper nutrition or sleep. My practice is no longer about ending. No single pose is a destination, or a sign of yogic perfection. As I near the end of my teacher training, I cherish my sustainable practice.