Sleeping in Savasana

My yoga journey

Yoga Therapy Training

At the end of last year I decided that I wanted to slightly change my yoga teaching. I wanted to work less with those who are fit and flexible and the typical yoga student and more with those who have injuries and physical or mental limitations.

As a result of this I decided to look at yoga therapy teacher training. Yoga Therapy is done on a one to one basis and is tailored to the individual and how they are feeling that day. It’s a hugely complex practice to teach as you need to be aware of so many potential issues. As a result the minimum amount of training for this is 500 hours, on top of a 200 hour qualification.

After doing some research I decided to look for a IYTA certified programme as this is more internationally recognised. As a result I’m doing an 800 hour qualification with The Yoga Therapy Institute in the Netherlands. It’s a great course and I’ll cover more of it in my next post.

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ClassPass

In December ClassPass launched in Edinburgh. I’ve now experienced it both as a teacher and as a student.

Firstly it’s marketed differently to each. As a student it’s advertised as an ability to try lots of different studios and classes without commitment to the studio. As a teacher it’s marketed as the opportunity to fill the last few spaces in your classes that you wouldn’t fill otherwise. A bit of a difference. Potentially nothing major but it’s not exactly the same.

ClassPass works on a credit system which are worth about £1 each and are used to book classes. You buy credits in blocks, £25 buys 25 credits and £70 buys you 70 credits. Each studio sets prices based on the drop in rate for classes and the number of credits is based on this. In general most classes in Edinburgh are 4-8 credits with a few studios being 10-12 credits.

The system itself is easy to navigate from a student point of view. Booking into classes is easy and the mobile app works well. Classes have to be cancelled at least 12 hours in advance or your get both charged the credits and a cancellation fee. It’s not great if you’re booked into a 6pm class and wake up that morning feeling ill. As a result as a user I’m much more likely to not book a class until just before so I don’t need to cancel it late and get charged.

As a studio the online interface assumes that you work on a computer. I generally check from my phone and it’s not mobile optimised and is a bit of a pain especially when you have multiple classes in one day as I can’t generally see more than the first two. I’ve also not really worked out how on the system to set different classes as a different value of credits, so if I’m holding 90 minute classes they can be more credits that the 60 minute ones. It’s not an issue as I’m not holding may of them.

In general it’s quite good from a user perspective as a way of trying different classes and especially if you travel quite a bit as there are loads of classes all over the UK. As a studio it’s useful but I’m not sure a great way of attracting new students long term.

 

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Here we go

So I’m going to see how writing a few posts goes.

To start with an update of what I’ve achieved so far this year.

I’ve started my yoga therapy training. I’ll write a fuller post on this and how it’s changing the way I teach another time but it’s a great course and I’m learning so much.

I’m doing pilates teacher training. The second weekend of this is in May and I’m really enjoying starting teaching this. It’s challenging and quite different to teaching yoga but really good.

I’ve hopefully found a new studio and space to teach from. The space I currently teach in is closing at the end of the year so it’ll be good to be moved and settled.

My personal practice is a bit of a work in progress. It’s not always consistent but I enjoy being able to get to classes when I can and am happy with it as it is now.

My hip has been variable. It was ok for a while and then got very sore. I didn’t really change what I did, it just got bad. I need to work on improving my strength so I can make sure it’s ok.

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Using Gym Membership More

I’ve been really bad recently, I’ve not been to my gym at all since before I went to Canada. That’s more than a month. It’s both a waste of money and I really should be getting back on track in terms of weight loss and regaining fitness.

My gym offers personal training sessions which I’ve never really looked at but I think for me it’d be a good option to make me more focused on a goal. I think having someone to be accountable to would be a good start. My plan is to go talk to them about options for this tomorrow and then book something in for the next few weeks.

I’ve been really bad for booking classes and then cancelling them the day before. I’m going to focus on booking less classes so I have two a week that I will attend rather than booking four with the intention of deciding which two I’ll do later and ending up cancelling all four.

I’m also aiming on swimming at least once a week. I really get benefit from it but haven’t been going as much as I’d like to. Yesterday I decided I was going but didn’t pack my bag to go, decided I’d go after I’d done something else and then decided it was too late and I was too tired. I need to get better at packing a bag and just going as soon as I’ve dropped Pico at home.

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Boy it’s been a while

It’s been a busy few months and I’ve just not had a chance to write things down. I’ve a lot to catch up on and I’m hoping to get back on track with a few things that have fallen behind.

Since I last wrote I’ve been to Canada, did a workshop with Candace, lost my yoga practice again and made some fairly major decisions about where to go next.

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Push ahead or slow down

My hip is a bit meh currently. It’s ok but not great. I can do most things but know when I’ve overdone it and boy is it bad.

I’m currently having a dilemma as to if I push ahead and do Kino McGregors ashtanga weekend in Edinburgh in a few weeks time or if I be sensible and try to sell my space. I really don’t think I can do five workshops in a weekend and still function. I’d be in so much pain and need to be on drugs for a good few weeks till it calmed down.

At the same time I’d really like to do it. It’d be an awesome experience and it’s been years since I did such intensive practice as that. I kind of want to see what my body can do and if I can manage it.

I’m going to a full primary series class next week and will see how I do after that.

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Online Learning

I’m expanding my knowledge and currently I’m exploring more online learning. I’ve previously signed up to a Udemy yoga course that honestly wasn’t that great.

It essentially was a camera set up on a tripod at the back of the room. The first half hour of the online course was introductions of the 20 people in the room and why they were on the course. The rest of the course was ok but given that the lecture was followed by a class it wasn’t the best.

I’m now trying again with an online hand reflexology course. I’d previously completed a course in hand massage which I haven’t used for a while so I want a refresh. It was only £10 and apparently is certified by the Complementary Therapists Accredited Association. This slightly worries me that I can watch 3.5 hours of online videos, answer some quizzes and then be a qualified registered insured therapist to deliver it. My main aim is to bring it into my one to one teaching so it’s going to be very gentle and relaxing. I’m also considering an in person course that’s running in Edinburgh in September to add to my knowledge.

Also with my plan to expand my yoga teaching, I’m starting to think long term and online courses seem to be a good source of passive income. I do a whole pile of work to set them up and then can sell them for the next few years. Certainly something to look at for later this year.

 

 

 

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Tummee Yoga Sequence Planner

I’ve been trialling Tummee for planning yoga classes and for sequences to be able to send to people. I have been working on expanding my one to one teaching and feel that being able to give hand outs or email them after class will help with this and the person doing home work between sessions.

It’s a nice little website and is fairly simple to use. There is a directory of poses that you can narrow down by style of yoga, body part, chakra, level. It often comes up with other poses similar to the one you had in mind so is quite good for using different poses from your usual ones.

They have more than 1950 poses (I’m not sure why they don’t say 2000) so you can find most of the ones that you’d use and they have a feature of requesting poses to be added.

There are a number of shared lesson plans which doesn’t seem to include many yin classes but good for getting ideas from and maybe little parts of sequences. I’ve not explored this part fully yet but it’s nice to know that if I was teaching more dynamic classes I could use them.

The sequences that you create can be shared either by email, by pdf or be printed out. It took me a couple of attempts to get them formatted correctly and showing the information that I wanted but I think I’ve now set it correctly. I’m going to use these both in one to ones and also for homework of a yoga challenge that I’m going to be running in September.

In general it’s a nice website and worth £48 per year to allow the hand outs to be nicely formatted and add value to classes.

Full disclosure, if you sign up via the links above I get extra months membership added to my subscription.

 

 

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Seeking Direction

I’m at a bit of a cross road just now. I’m not sure where I want to head, both in my yoga teaching life and life in general.

I’m considering options for Yoga Teacher Training either later this year or in early 2019. I think I’d like to do a more dynamic style of yoga so that I can teach classes flow classes with more confidence. I occasionally teach very slow flow classes but they aren’t that great and I’d like them to be better.

I also would like to teach a retreat at the end of next year and to do this I need to teach flow as I don’t think I’d get people coming along just to do yin and restorative. I need some flow classes for the morning yoga classes.

I also want to learn more restorative and yoga therapy work. Yoga Therapy teacher training is generally two years long and a huge commitment. Also would involve travelling to either London or Amsterdam for the two courses that I am considering. The Amsterdam one does a 100 hour intro to yoga therapy which I think might be a good starting place to it rather than just signing up to the full 500 hours.

In the interim I’m doing a short chair yoga course to work on getting moving slowly and mindfully. It’s a good starting place.

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2018 Q2 Aims

Here we go with the end of June 2018 aims and were I am with them. My starting aims were, and my Q1 update is here.

40 minutes of home practice per week. Either in one session or two 20 minutes videos.

I’m slowly starting to do this. I’m getting more into the habit again of doing a home practice at least one evening a week. I’m also currently doing about 15 or 20 minutes at the studio before I teach on Mondays.

Monthly attendance at yoga class or workshop.

I’m not sure I’m really managing this, I only managed in April and May because of a course and then being away at Omassim. I didn’t manage a June in person class due to life being in the way but I’ve one booked for next week.

Monthly blog posts

I’ve managed to continue to write almost weekly posts. They might not be super long or insightful but it’s been helpful to keep it up.

Complete restorative yoga teacher training

All done and certificate received 🙂

Complete current stage of professional exams.

I’m being in decisive with this, I’m not sure I still want to do these and I’m behind with doing them too.

Run quarterly workshops.

I’m now holding monthly restorative ‘workshops’ and I’m also going to be holding a eye mask and yoga workshop in July.

Yoga Studio to continue to break even.

There are a couple of extra expenses this month but it is just about still broken even for the first half of this year.

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