how to prepare for teacher training - practically

how to prepare for teacher training - practically

We’ve said it before and will say again that your teacher training experience begins the day you decide to register for training. That’s right! While you may not be on-site with other trainees and learning through your immersion experience each day, the learning process begins as soon as you decide to register. It starts with your first “Yes!” to your transformational yoga journey.

how to prepare for teacher training – mentally

how to prepare for teacher training – mentally

Last month we discussed how you can physically prepare for teacher training, and this month we address how to mentally prepare. To be clear, the only real prerequisite for teacher training is your keen intention and passion to become a yoga teacher. Still, given the occasion, it also provides a great advantage to take time to properly prepare so you can maximize the potential of this unique opportunity.

graduate #yogastory – Sara Stolle

 

a reflection of what is possible by Sara Stolle

My time in the Yoga bubble is over and I am actually allowed to teach! I don’t think that has set in yet. If I look back to the four weeks of my teacher training experience, a congeries of pictures appear in my head. It feels like an overwhelming flashback – full of emotions, both positive and negative. Everything seems so surreal, almost like a dream.

The first week was like dipping into a whole new world. Everything was new, exciting and different. Even though I had to follow my job as a teacher in the first three days of the training, I also had the feeling of being completely consumed by the yoga bubble. You start to think, breathe, live yoga all day long (sometimes even night). It wasn’t a weird feeling at all as there was no time to question your current lifestyle. And this attitude remained till the end of the training. It would be a lie if I said that I didn’t have times where I thought, “what am I doing here? Is everything worth it in the end?”

But as quick as these thoughts came up, they disappeared. Why did they disappear? One of the main reasons were the people, who became your study buddies, your friends, and your family throughout this journey. We created a kind of group dynamic and that was a huge motivation to go on and study more. This bond grew week by week, and in the end, we did not want to leave each other.

The other approach, which was developed stage by stage or week by week, was the amount of knowledge. I did not know that it is possible to learn so much in such a short time (and I’m a history teacher!) This perception relates not only to the study of yoga essentials and postures but for learning as a whole.

The teacher training was not only beneficial for my mind, but also for my body. To see how much Yoga my body can do and wants to do was surprising. I did a lot of yoga challenges in the past years, but the amount of work in the training was a different story. How? Well, for starters, you are totally focused on giving 100%, especially because you want to try the new things. Another factor that pushes your own practice was the group dynamic. If you see these hard working yogis all around you, you want to be part of it. Even when your muscles are sore and you actually can´t move, you also can´t resist. You want to do the posture, and you want to feel the posture.

Another stage of the training, which is maybe not that obvious, is the spiritual growth. The lectures guided you through thoughts, which you have never thought before. There was a new horizon showing up. This kind of extension of your own thinking changes your self-awareness, not only the studies of yoga sutras or the meditations but even more the discussions in the group lead to this awareness.

Coming back to my question, is it worth it? To sum up what only four weeks of the evolation yoga teacher training brought me: awareness about learning, about the potential of your mind and your body, spiritual extension, new friends even a new family. If I look at this, I am willing to say: everybody should do something like a yoga teacher training in life.

 

evolation

 

Evolation yoga is devoted to helping you become more Self-centered – in an ego-free way. By combining the powerful physical properties of hot yoga with the awareness-enhancing effects of meditation, evolation’s aim is to make you healthier, happier, and more in touch with that elusive little thing called the Self.

graduate #yogastory – Zana O’Connell

 

by Zana O’Connell, 2017 Berlin TT Graduate
I have recently returned home having spent the summer in Berlin deepening my teaching knowledge. What an incredible time it has been…

When my best friend, Sam, from my home studio in Leeds decided he was going to take the leap and sign up for the Hot Yoga Teacher Training with Evolation (the same as I previously did), I was flirting with the idea of going out to join him and the Evolation Yoga family for a week or so. I chatted with the company founder, Mark, about it, and knowing I wanted to do the flow training, he suggested I join them for the full course and complete my second 250hour Teacher Training with them. It was a little tricky to find the time and resources to make possible but somehow the universe conspired to help me and I found myself here, completing the vinyasa flow training (a different style for those non-yoga people!) just one year after my first TT!

Something I always repeat and hold close to myself is ‘The student is always the teacher, and the teacher is always the student.’ It is very important to me to always be humble in my teaching and know – that I will never know it all, especially in the Bikram yoga world where there are lots of egotistical, even narcissistic behavior and teachers with heads bigger than their hearts and this is something I find so strange in a place which is meant to be about creating peace and balance.

Maintaining my balance and humanness is very important to me as I try to stay true to what brought me to teaching in the first place and remember the purpose – to serve, to serve others, spread love and be true to myself. This is my life’s work.

Because I AM so connected to this and know that all I am as a teacher is a channel for people to connect to something higher, to their higher Self, a channel that needs to be looked after and maintained so that it doesn’t become blocked, maintenance for me means to keep learning and keep growing so that I can keep inspiring people and help them to grow themselves. Returning to teacher training has been just that for me.

Returning to the source and dipping back into the ‘yoga-bubble’ has been pure nourishment for my mind, body, and soul. I return clearer, stronger, wiser and even more humble. There is so much to know, and I will never, no matter how hard I study, know it all. And simply knowing this gives me the permission to let go of the desire to be the ‘perfect teacher’ to be anything other than the best version of my imperfect self.

I spent a lot of my daily practices during training setting my intention to offer myself. I made offerings through my practice, I set intentions “to Serve’ and I surrendered to the experience completely.
My experiences so far in this lifetime have taught me many lessons, a lot of very painful lessons, and I see now that this was the beginning of my training. The universe trained me by pushing me to my deepest edge, to the brink of giving in and to learn to fight for LIFE. It trained me to know what pain was so that I could treasure joy. It trained me to experience utter self-loathing so that I could understand the beauty of self-love. It trained me to feel intense discomfort so that I could honor peace.

The universe has been training me to teach my entire life, completing an actual ‘Teacher Training’ is simply the part which helps me to realize these truths and knows that everything I need is already inside of me, and TT is simply giving me the tools to tap into that.

Going back the second time was a really beautiful experience. I had the most incredible teacher, Irene, guiding us through the coursework. She and her partner, John, who was helping lead the Hot training alongside us are such an inspiring and gorgeous couple. Their energy was so wonderful to be around and Irene was a total beam of bright light to me. She inspired and fueled me with so much to take home to my students. I delved much deeper into the subtle energy of yoga, and I am learning the beauty of how much is and how much can be said without words.

I go home to teach with not just knowledge of Asana (yoga postures) but a far deeper understanding of the true essence of yoga. I am blessed to have found such a wonderful yoga family with Evolation and how they create space for me to continue to grow. This isn’t just a company out to make money selling yoga, but a true family sharing love and knowledge in the purest way. I am reminded of WHY we teach yoga – to help people to connect to the highest version of themselves, to become healthy in body, mind, and spirit. This is so much more than just asana, yet when you spend every day in the yoga room sometimes it’s easy to become disconnected from that a little.

Teaching asana is a route, but it is not the only way, we are constantly teaching others, and we can use our experience to help each other to grow in so many ways. Let us be open to the teachings of others, allow us the humbleness to always be able to be the student, to always be open to growing.

Keep growing, keep being curious about yourself and about life, keep the passion alive, stay open and most importantly, enjoy every second.

evolation

 

Evolation yoga is devoted to helping you become more Self-centered – in an ego-free way. By combining the powerful physical properties of hot yoga with the awareness-enhancing effects of meditation, evolation’s aim is to make you healthier, happier, and more in touch with that elusive little thing called the Self.

how to prepare for teacher training - physically

how to prepare for teacher training - physically

Learning how to teach is both transformative and empowering; a gift that will continue to bless your life for years to come. While your first official day of training might be several weeks or several months away, that doesn’t mean your training hasn’t already started. In fact, as practitioners of yoga, we are always in training. The “before, during and after” are equally important, and as teachers we never stop learning.

There are several stages to the preparation for a teacher training – physical, mental and practical (logistics!). In today’s blog we are going to discuss how you can best prepare your physical body for training. There are several key steps you can take to ease the transition and optimize the benefits from your daily life into daily training.

Casablanca Asana Yoga: an interview with Paula Jimenez

 

At Casablanca Asana Yoga, Paula Jimenez works hard to create a safe teaching environment as an important act of love, and shares that love for practicing yoga in effort to inspire and transform her students as much as she has been personally transformed and awakened through the practice. Paula is a graduate from evolation yoga’s 2015 teacher training class, and we sat down to both congratulate and learn more about her new and exciting business, Casablanca Asana Yoga.

How long has the studio been open, and what is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far in getting it open?

We opened Casablanca Asana Yoga on the 21st of June of 2017  (International Yoga Day :)) The biggest challenge has been explaining people that Yoga is not attached to a specific Religion. Colombia is a very Catholic country and Villavicencio, where we are placed, is a small town and a very conservative one. We really didn’t expect that people would consider the asana practice as a religion, but yes and that’s been a challenge. Anyhow, people have been very understanding and they ask instead of judge which is a very kind way to let us explain and let us represent what we were taught to; plus we are letting the practice talk itself. When Casablanca Asana Yoga was just an idea, we always wanted to build a place where people could be themselves, stay as long as they want and ask as many questions as needed, a place where the asana practice would be inclusive.

What is your 3-5 year vision for your studio and its role in the community?

Our vision is to be as steady as the Standing Head To knee Pose  Strong, commited, determined and calm. We want to tell everyone that the asana practice is a very safe place where you can start your relationship with yourself. We want that when people in our community think about yoga, they think about Casablanca; we want to let people know about the variety of asana practice, and if someone from Villavicencio goes somewhere else in the world for vacation or even if the move somewhere else and look for a hot yoga studio because they loved the experience with us, mission accomplished.

We want to make Casablanca as the second home of the practitioners and expand the everyday-practice lifestyle as wide as possible.

What is something you love about owning a studio?

Freedom.
My Fiancé Sdward and I opened the studio because we wanted to be free. Both of us used to work in the corporate world, retail, sales and every part of the supply chain. We got tired of all of that, being on the schedule every day and stressed out. First of all, the feeling of being free is just fantastic, we do have been working extremely hard, long hours, teaching and running the place by ourselves, we are physically tired but our hearts are just full. Working together is another thing we love, we are complementing each other work wise because doing what we where used to do in the corporate world but for ourselves is just amazing and last but not least, walking barefoot all day is priceless
 

Casablanca Asana Yoga is committed to help you develop the capacity to connect and integrate your mind with your body, through our four types of asana practice, all of them with different benefits but with the same physical and mental goal. You can find Paula and Casablanca at: 

Paula Jiménez

Casablanca Asana Yoga Co-Founder

FB: casablancaasanayoga

IG: @casablanca_asanayoga

Paula Jimenez

 

At Casablanca Asana Yoga, Paula Jimenez works hard to create a safe teaching environment as an important act of love, and shares that love for practicing yoga in effort to inspire and transform her students as much as she has been personally transformed and awakened through the practice. Paula is a graduate from evolation yoga’s 2015 teacher training class, and we sat down to both congratulate and learn more about her new and exciting business, Casablanca Asana Yoga.

my life after the hot 26+2 teacher training

 

by Paula Jimenez

I never thought my life was going to make a 180º change. When I enrolled to the Teacher Training I had a very naive idea of improving my physical/mental skills from a hobby approach. But no. It took me by surprise. A very nice one, though! Everything has changed since then – my life, my sense of being, my awareness, my heart.

Let me introduce myself. I’m Paula Jiménez, 28 years old, Colombian and an Evolation Yoga Teacher.

During the teacher training I really did experience joy, and I came to understand what that word meant. It was blissful, kind, hard, sweaty and a lovely experience at the same time. Being in a room with 15 people everyday – people that share my passion – and spending afternoons talking about life from an academic point of view, practicing yoga daily, and beyond. For me, that was just priceless.

When I went back to work nothing made sense anymore. Literally. I had a corporate job like everyone else, 8 to 5 every day and basically living on the edge of my nerves. Yelling to get attention and playing tough to get the numbers didn’t excite me anymore. Wearing high heels again was a nightmare: 4 months after I got back, I quit. I couldn’t take it anymore.

Teaching became my Facebook Job presentation. Since then, I haven’t been able to stop teaching. It’s just right and changed my life dramatically. I really think that doing the teacher training gave me the strength to see what I wasn’t able to see before. I was unhappy and I didn’t know it. I wanted a life where I could be myself, without knowing what that meant at the time. And since this teacher training everything became so easy to take. I went through a lot of changes, but my sight became more open and kind. Kind towards everything but most important, kind towards myself.

I moved to Buenos Aires last year (2016) and spent there 6 months with my boyfriend who had been living there for the past year. I did a Vinyasa Power Yoga Teacher Training to become more competitive as a teacher, and all of a sudden everything that I wanted became real. I got the opportunity to open my yoga studio! Without flinching, I moved back to Colombia with my boyfriend and now we are living in my home town and working towards our dream.

I think Yoga has built my path.

I’ve been a witness  of my own thoughts, I’ve been an outsider of my own life since I did the Evolation Yoga Teacher Training. I really understood what it is to trust and let go, and everything has been there for me. Everything that I ask for, with my true heart, with my humble heart, with my whole power, has been displayed there for me. Thank you, God. And being Thank-full (I believe) is the principle of abundance.

Somehow doing the same postures everyday has helped to make that “space” between your inner muscles and helps you to breath again, to feel alive, to feel and be in control of your life, but at the same time, out of it.

I’m beyond thankful for being in this yoga journey with my partner, being able to share the same passion with a person everyday, is just art. He’s a Yin Yoga teacher and we are building this yoga studio brick by brick.

Casablanca Asana Yoga is a yoga studio where you will find three types of yoga practice: Vinyasa Power Yoga, Yin Yoga and 26+2 hot yoga series. We have one hot room, one non-heated room and a deck with a fountain with enough room for 12/15 students. It’s beautiful.

I am beyond thankful for this project and I would love for everyone to come. Villavicencio, Colombia (my hometown) is a small town situated two hours away from Bogotá. This city is 30ºC all year around. We are right on the equator, so we do have nice weather, awesome fruits and vegetables all year around.

We are part of the Evolation Yoga Collective and we want this place to be a house of yoga, nothing exclusive but Inclusive; a place where everyone can practice and be themselves, a place where you can feel at home.

Everyone is welcome. Mi casa es tu casa, and in this case Casablanca Asana Yoga is your house as well.

 

Paula Jiménez

Casablanca Asana Yoga Co-Founder

FB: casablancaasanayoga

IG: @casablanca_asanayoga

 

 

 

 

 

 

Paula Jimenez

 

At Casablanca Asana Yoga, Paula Jimenez works hard to create a safe teaching environment as an important act of love, and shares that love for practicing yoga in effort to inspire and transform her students as much as she has been personally transformed and awakened through the practice. Paula is a graduate from evolation yoga’s 2015 teacher training class, and we sat down to both congratulate and learn more about her new and exciting business, Casablanca Asana Yoga.

graduate #yogastory, Uta Plotkin

Our graduate #yogastory series provides insight to firsthand student experience while in training. This one is particularly unique in that it’s broken down into individual journal entries, courtesy of our 2017 Santa Barbara graduate, Uta Plotkin.

WEEK 1. DAY 2. April 24th

The days feel sooo long!  I can’t believe it’s only day two.  Our lecture tonight was on meditation.  We did a twenty-five minute meditation, and it felt wonderful! When Elias asked us how we felt after, I said I felt relaxed and content, and that’s when I realized that I belong here.  That I had picked the right training to go to.  Truth be told, I was so filled with anxiety before coming here but all of that has dropped away now.  I killed it at half moon recitation today and felt exhilarated.  I loved our yoga class.  I loved our food!  I feel good and happy and focused.  I feel like I’m doing something meaningful.  I feel like I’m supposed to be here, and I feel like our teachers are taking excellent care of us and teaching us valuable things. They have so much personal experience to draw on.  I haven’t had cravings for booze or coffee either! Well, not strong ones at least  I’m sore and tired, but I just don’t care.

WEEK 1. DAY 5. April 28th

We practiced on the beach this morning and saw dolphins!  It was good to practice on the beach because we had plenty of space and were forced to project our voices and deal with the distraction of dogs sniffing us.  Our training group is made up of all women, which I’m really enjoying. Apparently we cry way more than past groups, haha!  It feels so good though.  I’m starting to feel special and powerful again where I was feeling so diminished.  I’m feeling hope and strength where I was feeling cynicism and impotence.  Every day the things we learn, physically and mentally, make every yoga class better than the last, and every yoga class strengthens my physical and mental practice.  It’s an amazing loop we’re in.

WEEK 2. DAY 5. May 5th

I was starting to feel tired and depressed so I did some good meditating today.  It was a gray, foggy day and my mood was low.  Tomorrow we teach the postures Tree, Toe and Savasana.  I’m not enthusiastic right now.  I’m tired.  Maybe tomorrow will be a coffee day. I’m teaching myself to walk with a micro-bend in my knee since I recently learned that I hyper-extend. It aggravates my old knee injury when I do that so I have to walk slow while I re-train myself. Who knew that walking would take so much concentration?  It’s draining. I’m accessing muscles and tissues that weren’t being used before so that’s pretty cool. And I’m actually really grateful at this point that I injured my knee because it allows me to better relate to my students with knee injuries.  That is the bright side of it! I think the best teachers teach from experience, so “thanks for tearing, ACL” (haha, never thought I’d say that).

WEEK 3. DAY 5. May 12th

We’ve been studying anatomy this week, which is fascinating because it’s directly tied to all these actions we’re performing every day.  Being here is physically intense so it’s interesting to get in there and see what’s happening.  Torrey is a great teacher.  She keeps it interesting and encourages us to ask questions and provides great answers to our questions.

Our lecture was fascinating, as always.  We talked about willfulness and surrender in yoga and in life in general.  I love the idea of finding a balance between these things – making it happen and letting it happen.  And I love the concept of non-attachment.  We talked a lot about relating to people from a “higher” place, which requires you to step back and evaluate, to self-reflect, to detach so as to figure out what serves the highest good (in your opinion) for the situation at hand.  Then you’re more likely to be honest, compassionate and do what’s in everyone’s best interest.  Maybe the other person will sense the place you’re coming from and be elevated as well.  Shivers!

WEEK 4. DAY 6. Graduation May 20th

Wow.  Graduation day.  We got our butts kicked by Mark in class this morning.  I liked how he sprinkled in yoga wisdom fluidly and matter-of-factly throughout the class, reminding people of other helpful aspects of yoga besides the physical.  Following that, Zefea led us in wall walks and we all shared what we learned at training (mine was to trust my decisions and my path more).  Then we began our graduation which consisted of [TOP SECRET (haha)]. Afterward we all drove into town and the girls escorted me to a tattoo parlor where I got a spider (eight limbs!) in a circle with a crown over it.  It’s on top of my right wrist where a watch might be.  The spider presented itself as my yoga spirit animal.  I want this tattoo to be like a mantra, reminding me of my yoga path of non-attachment, higher good and cessation of the modifications of the mind.  There have been so many things leading me to this point in my life that I can’t help but feel it’s part of a grand plan, a long play and a weird circuitous journey, but a purposeful one.

 

 

 

 

 

evolation

 

Evolation yoga is devoted to helping you become more Self-centered – in an ego-free way. By combining the powerful physical properties of hot yoga with the awareness-enhancing effects of meditation, evolation’s aim is to make you healthier, happier, and more in touch with that elusive little thing called the Self.