Before yoga became popular mainstream, I was following online yoga gurus like Tara Stiles in YouTube and doing quick yoga exercises from what I read in magazines. It was more of a 10-15 minute workout really then, just to get my body started.
My real first formal yoga class taught me a different style of yoga from what I experienced in the online videos - which is Yin Yoga. Unlike the yoga we all know from what we seem this type of yoga is a passive, quiet, and relaxing yoga. The flow of asanasgoes deeper than muscle and strength and target connective tissues and fascia. Energy channels and meridians are also targeted to recharge and detox the body. After that class, I can say that I got hooked. I even memorized the sequence even to do at home and followed the asanas in the presskit given to me. After that class, I bought my first yoga mat thinking that if I can't go to the studio, might as well do some sequences at home.
One of my favorite hip-openers, the swan. I attended my first yin yoga class in this studio.
Yin yoga was a great compliment in my pole fitness regimen it helped me get my splits and backbends safer. It was through yin yoga that I learned that I need to elongate before I do my backbend instead of crunching in order to protect my spine. In a deeper sense, yin yoga brings balance to an otherwise active fitness routine and daily grind to quiet the mind and let the body rest and recover. Even the monthly cycle has been calmed through yin yoga. With that too, my body became ready to practice more active styles of yoga like Vinyasa and Hatha yoga. Yoga for me was the alternative for my cross-training in pole because it is a safe way to develop my strength and flexibility.
During my earlier months practicing yoga, some of the people I meet ask me, "Do you teach yoga?" I was like, "No, I just practice." And then, the follow-up question, "Why don't you start teaching? You're really flexible and strong. Extra money pa" There's more to being a teacher than just being very skilled, strong, and flexible. There's also the proper intention, and not just solely to make extra money. And the proper time.
Earlier this year, I was contemplating on taking up yin yoga teacher training. I wanted to share how the practice affected me physically. Besides, with today's active lifestyle and Facebook feeds underestimating the value of sleep and rest (I have seen too many "coffee-powered with 2 hours of sleep" statuses turn to "on antibioitcs and fluids" ), it would be great to share yin to others. For people who want to get started doing yoga, yin yoga is a good practice before going to a more dynamic practice. For example, if I started with a very strong, active practice, I would be too overwhelmed to come back to the mat.
Yin yoga has helped me not just in my dynamic fitness activities but also in my overall help. I decided to level up and take a formal teacher training program to share this experience with others.
Yin Yoga teacher training would usually be abroad, and a yoga teacher training program is very expensive. Aside from the module, you would need to spend for your flight, accommodations, meals, etc. The schedule would also be in December. Since December is usually peak season for makeup artists. I thought that yin yoga teacher training would just remain to be a dream. There however, was something in me that says that, it will happen. I just didn't know how. Maybe all my bookings would move to the months prior and after, making the teacher training dates magically be free for me to fly to Singapore. Maybe my cat is actually a magical cat that can teleport me to Singapore and back and poops money as an added bonus.
Or maybe teacher training would come to Manila. And that happened
Months back, it was announced that there would be another Yin Yoga teacher training to be conducted here in Manila in September of this year. It would be a 50-hour basic teacher training given by Victor Chng (I attended a couple of his workshops before when he was here in Manila). I was like, "This could be a sign!" . Also, it's going to be here in Manila, so no need to fly out or continue wishing my cat is magical. Also, it would occur on weekdays at an off-peak month. I immediately attended the orientation and expressed my intention to attend the teacher training to Dona (who was my first yin yoga teacher). Just this week, the reservation has been sealed and confirmed. No turning back kitty, no turning back. Maybe the stars are saying, this is your time kitty.
Leading to September, I am deepening my yin practice by attending the workshops and classes I could attend. I also attended a teacher's top up class on my birthday in order to further prepare myself by learning from present yin yoga teachers. Self-practice also helps, and I do my own sequences at home and try to practice them or list down the sequence I learn in class or shared by my mentors and practice them at home.
A surprise too, my regular practice and knowledge gained from workshops and asking my mentors was put to test when I taught my first yin yoga class with Yoga For Life. How did it feel? I admit I was nervous in the first few asanas, and I really have to learn how to make that bell chime. It felt more at home as the class progressed, just like easing myself into a yoga pose.
My makeup career will still continue, and this will even be a good compliment that I can share with my colleagues. It's an exciting experience and I'm looking forward to this new career opportunity while going deeper in my practice. In the future, I look forward to sharing with others my knowledge and yin experience. I look forward to learning from my teachers Dona, Victor, Kit, and Lek and my fellow classmates who have different stories why they decided to take the teacher training too.
I remember a photo posted by my pole teacher Natasha Wang in her Instagram;
I guess it called out to me in one way to not let this opportunity pass, to take a teacher training program here locally. Otherwise, I would still be in that sea of "what if's?"
This is it!!! Looking forward to September.