Friday, February 20, 2015

Partner Yoga Weekend

I've been teaching with Yoga For Life since December and it has been a very wonderful experience sharing what I have learned and experienced in yoga. I've been practicing yoga with them for quite some time now, making it a Sunday morning habit. For those who do not know what Yoga For Life is, Yoga For Life is a non-government organization that supports and empowers those living with HIV and AIDS through the healing practice of yoga. We do this by the donation-based community classes where we all practice together as one community regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation, HIV status, social status, or spiritual belief. And also, we remove discrimination and stigma.  Teaching has been a wonderful experience for me, and it has been really great to see all my students after classes appreciating my classes and leave with new and relaxed bodies and calmer minds.

Last weekend, since it was a Valentine's weekend, we practiced partner yoga. Partner yoga has two teachers, and I co-taught the two partner yin classes with my favorite doctor Kit. Partner yin yoga is not entirely yin, because we direct our energy not just to ourselves but to our partner. In solo yin yoga we have props that help us get deeper into the pose. Here, our partners sometimes act as props. The photos shown here are from our Sunday class at Beyond Yoga Libis.

In partner yin yoga, we do not just think of ourselves. We think also of our partners. Are we helping our partners go deep into the pose or are we obstructing them from going deeper. Or as we go deeper into the pose, are we hurting our partner as a consequence? It's a give-and-take thing, and we meet halfway. We have to think of our partner. Isn't it awesome how yoga mimics life as well?

Communication by sharing energies. How do we communicate without words while in the pose?

"Partner Yin Yoga, like what we did at Yoga For Life community class today, is even more intimate: a subtle practice of the self, a gentle exploration of the other, and a gradual discovery of the self through the partner. Trust, vulnerability, openness, honesty, and connection are just some of the gifts in our practice today."

--Kit Navarro

In biology class, we learn about symbiotic relationships, how organisms in the world interact with one another, There is a relationship called parasitism where one just gives and the other just takes at the expense of the other. Commensalism is when the other benefits and the other is just deadma, or unaffected. Partner yoga has to be mutualism, where both species benefit from the relationship.

Full class! Thank you everyone for sharing your energies this Valentine's weekend and thank you Kit for sharing your knowledge!

Life's lessons can be learned also in our practice. An Ashtanga yoga teacher once told me that I should use yoga not just to help me with my body on the physical level but also help me in order to be a better person. Taking spirituality aside, yoga may help me be in harmony with my surroundings, and as I begun teaching, this makes sense now.

And the thought of teaching, I'll be teaching this Sunday at Beyond Yoga BHS, and I'll be doing one my signature Happy Hips sequences. This will be our last community class at Beyond Yoga BHS because Beyond Yoga BHS will soon be moving to Beyond Yoga Serendra.

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