Writing this SoundBite is making me feel a little uncomfortable. Let me just preface it by saying that all (yoga) teachers have good intentions. That was one thing I learned in my first teacher training. With that said, I’ll also say I’m sure the teacher I practiced with on Sunday also had good intentions. It was a guest teacher filling in for a teacher I occasionally practice with. I went in with an open mind, wanting to learn what I could from him. But I quickly recognized during the course of my practice that he’s not a teacher I resonate with: his adjustments were not only forceful but threw me off balance; when he came to push on me in a forward folding pose and I told him I needed to be cautious because my hamstrings get easily pulled–he got defensive; when I was in a modified version of a pose that he was obviously not familiar with, he told me to try his version and said, “just humor me”–even though it didn’t do anything for me; and when I was in Savasana (the final and most important pose for you to rest in), he tried to have a conversation with me.
I left practice feeling off kilter and angry. In my experience, some teachers may not be open to what you tell them because it may be contrary to what they think you need or what they want for you. This is where the “best of intentions” and a teacher’s ego get blurred. So as a teacher and as a student, please make sure you’re with a teacher who puts you and your needs first, respects you and your body, and is there to help you and not to feed their own ego. The Sanskrit word ‘guru’ means spiritual teacher and the word guru where ‘gu’ means darkness and ‘ru’ means light literally means one who brings you from darkness into light. There are many gurus in our life in one form or another but know that you are your best guru.
Cheers to a Healthy. Happy. Sexy. You.