Prana Yoga Studio Teacher Training
Due to a hectic few weeks, weekend 2&3 yoga recap had to be combined. I could sum those two full weekends up with one word though: shock. The extent that I have been changing physically, mentally, emotionally, etc. in such a short period of time is shocking…and rather nerve racking at the same time.
Coming into this YTT I knew I would become more knowledgeable about yoga and its philosophies/history but honestly wasn’t sure if I would be able to fully submerge in it and take it to heart… I proved myself wrong. The history behind this 1000s of year old practices is unreal and makes you realize yoga is not just about the physical postures you can twist your body into. Whether it be the breath, meditation, or chanting, there is much more to yoga than trying to get a nice toosh.
As I mentioned earlier, after just three weekends I am already noticing a physiological change. However, this change isn’t external and cannot be seen by the naked eye. Sure, throughout this training I might start seeing more tone to my muscles and better posture but those aren’t apparent right now. Instead, this change is happening internally, more to the level of my nervous system. I know what you’re thinking, “How on earth do you know if your nervous system is physically changing?”and I always asked myself the exact same question when someone declared yoga has the capability to transform one’s nervous system. But know, that statement doesn’t seem so crazy after all and I know think I know the answer. My answer: because I started to cry…out of NO WHERE. This freaked me out haha. I like to think myself as not a very emotional person (except maybe on the last mile of my 100 miler race) so me starting to cry out of no where after class one day was absolutely absurd to me! There was nothing I was sad, mad, angry, or even overly happy about but after stepping into my car, low and behold tears started running down my face. For a “tough athlete” this is something pretty hard to admit/share.
After going home and doing some research after my little episode, I realized I wasn’t so coocoo after all. Yoga has been found in research to open up the autonomic nervous system, the system responsible for all those subconscious duties: heart and resp rate, perspiration, digestion, sexual arousal, etc.
Purification of the nervous system is possible through an improved mental attitude, relaxation and the postures that help adjust the spine and its components (ie. the nervous system). Furthermore, it has been shown that through the vibrations of chanting (which we have done quite a bit of so far) the nervous system can be opened and begin to release any tensions or stressors someone subconsciously may have been holding onto. Well, it seems mine nervous system door flung wide open like a dam gate instead of gradually creaking open haha. With this though I have been feeling lighter, more energized and more positive. Relating this to my athletics, I have seen huge positive impacts during work outs. No stressors have been popping up anymore and the constant to-do list I sometimes ramble off in my head while running the trails has quieted down; allowing me to stay focus on my body and breath that much more and stay grounded in the present.
This recap may be a little on the heavier side but I definitely think it is something worth sharing, especially to those who think like I once did…”yoga is purely a physical practice”. The little stuff that come with yoga that I was a little skeptical of before such as meditation, chanting, and mental reflection can provide so many benefits alone. My advice: next time you go into yoga, go in open-minded. Let yourself absorb all the components of it and you may just surprise yourself on what arises
Many thanks to the wonderful people at Prana Yoga Studio for helping me discover all of this!
Check out more on the journey to becoming a yoga teacher…