Ashtanga Yoga Teacher: My Journey and Expertise

“Change is not something that we should fear. Instead, we should embrace it. Without change, nothing would grow or blossom. No one would ever move forward to become who they’re meant to be.” This idea is close to my heart as I think back on my journey from fitness to an Ashtanga Yoga tutor. I’ve spent over four years helping others enjoy the calm and energy of Ashtanga Yoga. This practice has shaped my life for a decade1.

I found Ashtanga Yoga by chance, and it changed me deeply. Ten years ago, I began a journey that completely altered my view on wellness. It led me to become an Ashtanga Yoga teacher1. I went to London for my Ashtanga Yoga certification. London, with its lively pulse, was as energising as Ashtanga itself. In this bustling city, I took a deep dive into Ashtanga Yoga for five to six hours a day. This prepared me well to offer the benefits of Ashtanga Yoga to those seeking balance and strength1.

I saved for a year to afford the crucial Ashtanga Yoga teacher training. London’s charm gave me insights that now enliven my classes. But it’s the inner dance of the Ashtanga Yoga poses, how they balance mind, body, and spirit, that sparks my teaching passion. This commitment has reached over 1.6 million readers in ten years1.

My intensive Ashtanga Yoga teacher training showcase my dedication to the practice. The hard work during those sessions formed the base of my teachings in workshops and classes today. This path has led to a fulfilling career, guiding many students into Ashtanga Yoga’s deep benefits.

Key Takeaways

  • The significance of embracing change as a catalyst for growth in life and career.
  • A decade-long journey punctuated by Ashtanga Yoga’s transformative impact1.
  • The vital role that London’s Ashtanga Yoga training played in honing my craft as a teacher1.
  • The importance of perseverance in saving and preparing for quality Ashtanga Yoga workshops1.
  • How the discipline of practicing Ashtanga for hours daily becomes a cornerstone of teaching1.
  • The extensive reach and influence of sharing my Ashtanga Yoga experiences with a vast readership1.

Embarking on the Ashtanga Yoga Path

I began my Ashtanga Yoga journey in busy London. The practice’s discipline appealed to my wellness goal. Developed in the early 20th century by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois2, it was the strength and flexibility I wanted. The eight limbs of Ashtanga, from yama to samadhi, matched my holistic wellness search2.

Discovering Ashtanga Yoga in London

In London, a modern, fast-paced city, I discovered Ashtanga’s primary series, yoga chikitsa. I practised it six days a week2. This routine, meant for mornings, brought me new energy and vitality2.

Transitioning from Human Resources to Yoga

I left a HR career for Ashtanga Yoga in London. The community here supports beginners with a personal approach2. It wasn’t just about physical effort. Ashtanga also synced my breath and movements beautifully2.

The Impact of Yoga on Personal Struggles

Ashtanga Yoga helped me face personal challenges. It balanced more than just yoga poses. It brought balance to my life too2. This journey was hard at first but built my resilience. I gained endurance that lasted beyond yoga practice2.

My change was not only physical. It was also mental and spiritual. Ashtanga taught me to handle life’s challenges calmly. It’s a story of overcoming and hope.

Ashtanga Yoga London Class

My stories and data on Ashtanga Yoga show a true change in consciousness. They highlight the energy and welcome nature of Ashtanga Yoga London.

My First Steps Towards Becoming a Qualified Ashtanga Yoga Teacher

Starting my journey to become an Ashtanga Yoga teacher was a big change in my life3. I looked at many courses, focusing on their content and what they taught about yoga3. I chose a program that matched my dream of really understanding Ashtanga Yoga.

Ashtanga Yoga Teacher Training

Gaining Initial Experience in India and Brasil

I first learned a lot in India and Brasil, which are very important places for yoga3. They showed me different ways to think about yoga’s old traditions and how it’s practiced today.

Teaching Beginnings and Overcoming Difficulties

When I started teaching, I realized how important it was to have a recognized qualification3. To get past early hurdles, I depended on my teachers and helpful resources like books and videos3. Having online help and being able to go at my own pace helped me improve my skills. This support also made sure I finished the course when I wanted to3.

Getting on this path meant I had to truly dedicate myself and be ready to tackle any challenge3. It was just the start of my journey. I learned to be patient and keep going, with every pose bringing me closer to being a teacher who keeps growing and discovering more about themselves.

Building Experience Through Assisting and Cover Classes

My journey in Ashtanga Yoga grew when I started helping and taking classes at Astanga Yoga London (AYL). This was a key time for improving my skills. I learned to meet the various needs of different students.

Astanga Yoga London community

Finding Opportunities at Astanga Yoga London (AYL)

AYL was perfect for growth, thanks to its welcoming community and diverse classes. The teachers’ dedication matched my teaching ideals. Assisting there showed the high value placed on learning, which the positive responses to the leader’s teaching showed4.

The Value of Learning from a Diverse Range of Students

Working with a wide range of students at AYL deepened my teaching insights. Every class offered new lessons in communication, adapting to needs, and connecting emotionally. These moments highlighted the power of Ashtanga Yoga. They stressed the need for both theory and practice in learning4.

Tackling the Competitive Landscape of Yoga Auditions

Yoga auditions are tough, showing how competitive this field can be. My strategy was continual learning and open-mindedness to feedback. I looked up to Gingi for his knowledge and adjusting skills4. Facing this competition, I grew more confident in my abilities, thanks to thorough training4.

The table below shows key moments from my early teaching days at AYL:

Year Experience Milestone Description
2005 Introduction to Ashtanga First introduced to Ashtanga Yoga in London, triggering the start of a lifelong dedication to the practice.
2013 Specialised Training Completed baby yoga training while pregnant, which introduced the concept of integrating joy into yoga practices.
Current Teaching at AYL Through assisting and cover classes, I embraced the challenge of meeting the needs of a diverse student cohort, preparing me for my current teaching endeavours.

In summary, Astanga Yoga London was crucial in my growth. It taught me to value our community’s diversity and adapt to every student’s path5.

The Continuous Journey to Mysore for Ashtanga Yoga Training

Every year, I go to Mysore to improve my Ashtanga Yoga skills. This city is where I grow in my practice and teaching. It shows my commitment and helps me grow in many ways.

Ashtanga Yoga Training in Mysore

Making Sacrifices for Further Education

I made big sacrifices to learn more about Ashtanga Yoga. I left behind comfort and my family, facing money challenges. These sacrifices improved my skills and knowledge a lot.

Assisting Renowned Ashtanga Yoga Practitioner Sharath

Experience Gained Impact on Teaching
Personal practice refinement Enhanced credibility and authenticity in teaching methods
Cultural immersion in Mysore Comprehensive understanding of Ashtanga Yoga’s roots
One-on-one guidance from Sharath Ability to offer deeper insights and individualised attention

My experiences in Mysore have improved my teaching. They also taught me the value of continuous learning. Despite the sacrifices, sharing Ashtanga Yoga’s legacy is rewarding.

Landing My Dream Job: Leading My First Mysore Programme

Mysore program

Becoming an Ashtanga Yoga teacher was my dream. Leading my first Mysore program made that dream a reality. It showed my hard work over the years, following K. Pattabhi Jois’ vision from 19486. In Mysore, the birthplace of this yoga style, I learned to master each pose6. This experience shaped how I teach today.

Balancing Teaching Schedules and Financial Challenges

Running a Mysore program taught me much about balance. Financially, it meant missing out on other jobs. Yet, Yoga’s teachings about following your passion helped me7. Teaching the precise sequence of asanas and seeing my students’ gratitude was truly rewarding67.

The Physical and Mental Demands of Extensive Teaching Hours

Mysore programs demand much, both physically and mentally. I learned to blend breathing, posture, and focus in my practice6. This approach gave me energy and clarity. Including opening chants and focusing on core strength helped maintain my well-being amidst a busy schedule6.

Sharing my knowledge has been fulfilling. I focus on guiding each student through Ashtanga’s six series6. This role taught me about patience and being present. It has been amazing to see the change in both myself and my students, no matter their experience level.

Adapting My Ashtanga Yoga Career to Sustain Well-being

To keep well in my Ashtanga Yoga career, I’ve changed how I work. My changes are based on what I’ve learned and yoga’s huge benefits. Using yoga helps me and my students stay balanced in mind, body, and spirit8. It’s made a big difference in my teaching and in continuing my yoga work.

Ashtanga Yoga Evening Class

Moving my classes to the evening was a big move for me. It helped me and my students find time to relax after a busy day. Stress can lead to health problems, but evening yoga helps avoid that8.

Transition to Evening Classes for Self-Care

Choosing to hold sessions in the evening was about taking care of ourselves. It’s a time for calm and doing yoga that helps us think and heal8. Since changing to evening yoga, I and my students sleep better and cope better with stress. Many studies support this too.

Embracing Private Classes and Specialised Yoga Training

I also started giving private lessons and special training. This lets me help people in a way that’s just right for them. It’s great for people with certain health issues, as many research findings show8. Teaching this way has made my yoga work more valuable and helped my clients live better.

This table shows the changes I’ve made and what they’ve achieved:

Adaptation Outcome Significance
Evening Classes Enhanced stress management Aids in reducing anxiety and promoting better sleep8
Private Classes Personalised therapeutic effects Addresses specific health concerns with focused yoga interventions8
Specialised Training Expanded teaching skills Enables supporting the diverse needs and well-being of various demographics8

Overall, changing how I approach my Ashtanga Yoga work shows how yoga can adapt over time. By focusing on well-being, for myself and my students, I keep the spirit of yoga alive. I also show how yoga can complement Western medicine8.

Navigating Grief and Finding Solace in Ashtanga Yoga

Ashtanga Yoga for Mental Health Support

In life’s twists and turns, I found Ashtanga Yoga. It became a source of comfort during tough times. Since teaching yoga in 20049, I’ve grown in New York City and Miami9. Here, I improved my skills and saw amazing human strength. On the yoga mat, with each breath and move, I found peace for my mind and soul.

Using Yoga as a Tool for Mental Health Support

Our bodies and minds share a complex link. Being over 70% water10, our bodies need motion, not stillness. A 90-minute yoga class keeps our spirit active and us present10. For those in deep sorrow, even 10 minutes of yoga can help. It makes joints flexible and starts the healing process10. This practice teaches patience and supports growth, showing how steady effort brings change10.

Community and Solace in Yoga Following Personal Loss

The community at Lotus House in Florida9 is a beacon of hope. Teaching there, I’ve seen unity bring healing. Working with schools and hospitals in Miami9, I learnt it’s not just about yoga. It’s about creating a support network for those in grief, guiding them towards emotional healing and comfort.

At Warrior Flow, where I teach9, I promote inclusivity. We believe everyone needs a circle, not just those seeking yoga for health at 5010. Starting with a 20-minute walk can be hard but grows into a valuable habit10. Similarly, with support, we can face loss more easily, connected by the spirit of yoga.

Yoga truly guided me through my own losses. It offered me a community where each breath and pose made a difference. This journey was measured not in miles, but in the growth within my heart and soul.

The Evolution of My Ashtanga Yoga Practice

My journey with Ashtanga Yoga has been life-changing. It blends old traditions with our modern lives. My experience follows the teachings from the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in Mysore, India11. This shows how Ashtanga adapts to our needs today. The institute, since 194812, led now by R. Sharath Jois11, inspires many, including me. I’ve learnt the importance of regular Ashtanga Yoga for good health.

Ujjayi breathing, Drishti, Vinyasa, and Bandhas have greatly improved my health and mind11. Practicing six days a week has built my discipline and strength11. This routine ties me closely to Ashtanga’s history. It was passed down to Pattabhi Jois by Krishnamacharya. This history echoes the dedication needed13.

Incorporating Ashtanga Philosophy into Daily Life

Ashtanga’s philosophy now shapes my daily actions, adding mindfulness to every moment. This movement gained momentum in the late 20th century in the West11. By following Ashtanga’s key teachings, I’ve joined others in achieving better flexibility, balance, and clarity11. This applies anywhere, from Camden to Shoreditch, or globally. We all aim to live fully with Ashtanga’s spirit12.

Adjusting My Personal Practice for Sustainable Health

My Ashtanga practice alternates between Led and Mysore styles11. Led classes bring communal energy, Mysore lets me focus on individual growth. This balance keeps my practice healthy and enduring. Rest days on Saturdays and moon days show the practice’s respect for our bodies11. Adapting to beginner’s classes or advanced sequences, Ashtanga meets everyone’s wellness journey11.

Reflecting on Ashtanga’s great teachers, from Krishnamacharya to Pattabhi Jois, highlights the depth of this path13. Their devotion informs my teaching and personal practice today12. Like many, I strive to embody Ashtanga’s philosophy daily, enriching my life and others’.

Launching the Yoga Mentor Academy: Supporting New Ashtanga Yoga Teachers

Understanding the need for support, I started the Yoga Mentor Academy. It’s a special place focused on helping new yoga teachers find their way. We believe in the power of community, knowing it helps everyone grow stronger together.

Creating a Community for Shared Learning and Growth

The Yoga Mentor Academy creates a welcoming space for learning. We’ve seen many diploma courses pop up, like the 200-hour program at Merchant City Yoga and others with flexible timetables. Our academy complements these formal studies. It offers a space where teachers learn together14.

It provides extra guidance and lets peers share and grow together. This way, learning goes beyond the classroom.

Sharing Resources and Offering Guidance to Novices

Starting teachers need resources, and we’ve got them covered. Whether from Sivananda’s intense course or the 200-hour training at CAMYOGA, our academy adds value14. We have a treasure trove of knowledge on all things Ashtanga Yoga, from proper Sanskrit names to detailed Vinyasas sequences15.

Our personalised guidance helps refine teaching methods, inspired by Yoga Hero’s focus on safety14. We help clear up common myths around Ashtanga Yoga and share its essence15. Our academy is here to support teachers in deepening their practice, whether it’s anatomy, breathwork, or the philosophy and meditation of Ashtanga Yoga16.

We’re committed to guiding new Ashtanga Yoga teachers. Our goal is to keep the practice’s true spirit alive while building a passionate community of teachers and learners.

Conclusion

Looking back on my time as an Ashtanga Yoga teacher, I’ve been deeply influenced by K. Pattabhi Jois’s teachings17. He made Ashtanga vinyasa yoga popular in the twentieth century. The opening of the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in 194817 and the unique ‘Mysore style’ of teaching have been key17. This style insists on learning each asana on its own. This ancient way has shaped my teaching and the core beliefs I share with my students.

The philosophy behind Ashtanga has eight parts, as laid out by Patanjali. It is reflected in the learning style at Triyoga in London18. This place offers a wide range of Ashtanga yoga classes for all levels in five locations18. The practice combines discipline with fluidity17. I’ve loved helping students through Ashtanga’s six series, from the basic to the advanced levels1718. Teaching Ashtanga has been more than a job; it’s been my passion and commitment.

As I finish my story, I’m reminded of the mangala mantra used to close each Ashtanga session17. It marks the end and start of cycles and fits well with the joy I’ve found in teaching Ashtanga Yoga. I am determined to keep sharing the wisdom and benefits of this respected practice as a devoted Ashtanga Yoga teacher.

FAQ

How did you discover Ashtanga Yoga?

I found Ashtanga Yoga while I was living in London. I started going to classes and quickly fell in love with it.

What made you transition from a career in Human Resources to becoming a yoga teacher?

My passion for yoga grew the more I practiced. I wanted to share yoga’s benefits with others. This led me to switch from Human Resources to teaching yoga full-time.

How has practicing yoga impacted your personal struggles?

Yoga has deeply touched my life during tough times. It brought me balance, healing, and a better understanding of myself.

How did you become a qualified Ashtanga Yoga teacher?

I trained in India and Brasil, diving into Ashtanga Yoga’s practice and philosophy. This training shaped me into the teacher I am today.

What challenges did you face during your early teaching beginnings, and how did you overcome them?

At the start, I doubted myself and struggled to find my unique teaching style. But, by not giving up and continuously learning, I found my confidence and skill as a yoga teacher.

How did assisting and cover classes help you build your experience as a yoga teacher?

Assisting in classes was a chance for me to learn firsthand from experts. It helped me sharpen my skills and grow professionally.

How did you navigate the competitive landscape of yoga auditions?

Facing yoga auditions required determination, readiness, and belief in myself. I highlighted my unique teaching approach and connected with the yoga world to thrive.

How did your journey to Mysore, India for Ashtanga Yoga training enhance your teaching skills?

Going to Mysore, India, deepened my yoga knowledge, allowed me to learn from top practitioners, and help Sharath teach. This journey greatly enriched both my teaching and personal practice.

How did you handle the demands of leading your first Mysore program?

Leading my first Mysore program was tough. I had to manage teaching schedules and financial issues. I also focused on my self-care to keep up my health and teaching energy.

How did you adapt your Ashtanga Yoga career to sustain your well-being?

For my health, I started teaching evening classes. This change helped me look after myself better and keep a balance between work and life. I also offered private classes and specific training to meet students’ individual needs.

How did yoga support your journey through grief and loss?

During hard times of grief and loss, yoga was a beacon of hope. It gave me peace, strength, and a caring community to help me through.

How did you incorporate Ashtanga philosophy into your daily life?

I live by Ashtanga philosophy every day through mindfulness and spiritual practices. Bringing these teachings into my daily life has filled it with meaning and contentment.

What inspired you to launch the Yoga Mentor Academy?

I started the Yoga Mentor Academy to help new yoga teachers. It’s a place for learning, growing together, and offering support and advice to those just starting out.

Source Links

  1. https://www.teachingtraveling.com/ashtanga-yoga-teacher-training-swenson/
  2. https://www.wedoyoga.co.uk/blogs/news/embarking-on-the-ashtanga-journey-a-guide-for-beginners-and-what-to-expect-in-class
  3. https://www.yogitimes.com/article/synergy-yoga-teacher-training-intensive-ttc-way3-questions-answers-infoshow-to-apply
  4. https://www.theshalalondon.com/yogateachertraining/yoga-adjusts-assists-teacher-training-in-studio/
  5. https://www.warmheartsyoga.co.uk/blog/2018/09/06/my-yoga-journey
  6. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashtanga_Vinyasa_Yoga
  7. https://www.ihanuman.com/tags/practice
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3193654/
  9. https://omstars.com/blog/practice/redefining-the-role-of-a-yoga-teacher/
  10. https://www.drbradmiller.com/captivate-podcast/overcoming-trauma-how-yoga-helped-kathy-white-through-grief-and-loss/
  11. https://www.yogabasics.com/learn/ashtanga-yoga/
  12. https://triyoga.co.uk/blog/yoga/history-ashtanga-vinyasa-yoga/
  13. https://www.keenonyoga.com/history-of-ashtanga-yoga-in-the-west/
  14. https://www.allyogatraining.com/best-ytt-uk.html
  15. https://www.samyakyoga.org/why-do-we-teach-ashtanga-yoga-teacher-training
  16. https://bookretreats.com/blog/10-top-ashtanga-yoga-teacher-training-courses/
  17. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashtanga_vinyasa_yoga
  18. https://triyoga.co.uk/ashtanga-yoga-classes/