Dear readers, I tried something last night that I haven’t done in a long time. Two years almost.
I tried a new yoga class… at a new studio. Gasp!
Once you stop laughing at me, I will explain.
Done? ; )
You may not know, but I am an Iyengar gal. I work part-time and have been doing yoga at an Iyengar studio for 4 years and it has been my world since the start due to my injury. My yoga journey began with Hatha yoga, which was lovely and is my training, but shortly after I was drawn to Iyengar yoga. I have whiplash damage and chronic neck pain, so the alignment focus and use of props in Iyengar yoga resonated with me and my limitations (at the time) right away. Iyengar classes and workshops have taught me so much about my own body and yoga and I continue to learn with every class I attend. The teachers are incredibly knowledgeable and always ready with adjustments and alternate poses for those that need them.
I actually used to try new classes and studios all the time, I’ve tried different styles and places so that I could gain the most knowledge possible about yoga. But for some reason, I haven’t attended a new studio or yoga style in about 2 years. I can’t explain it, maybe I just got comfortable going to the one studio. Maybe I was nervous about doing something new, the reasons aren’t clear to me right now. So last night, I knew it was time. Time to get my butt to a new class, time to experience something new.
The class was called Yoga for Meditation, so I was drawn in right away. I’ve been talking about making changes in my life lately and calming things down, so I thought that this class might just suit me. I thought about it a little too long – for some reason I get this weird feeling of “cheating” on my yoga studio, weird right? Well, some people thought so. After a little bit of blah-blahing in my mind, I grabbed my mat and went to the studio. I was pleasantly surprised with how nice the front desk staff was, you just never know what you will get at new studios sometimes. When I mentioned I was new, even a fellow student told me that she thought I would really enjoy the class. Awesome, feeling welcome already!
The class was very different from anything I’ve done in the past two years. To go from an Iyengar class where the teachers monitor your postures, make adjustments, and focus on your alignment to a class that is pretty free with the teacher staying mostly at the front is strange to me. Not bad entirely, but definitely different. The poses we did in this class weren’t too extensive, so close monitoring wasn’t necessarily required but I did notice this difference. The teacher also talked pretty much through the entire class, sort of like a talking meditation. Some might find this annoying, but I actually enjoyed the constant voice to bring my thoughts back to in this meditative class. His voice was calming and non-invasive, so it nice but also very different from Iyengar yoga. We started with laying down and performing a meditative breathing exercise and I will be honest, my lungs felt clenched and strained. I guess from being so closed doing desk work and not performing these exercises regularly, my lungs were telling me something. Ok lungs I hear you, something to work on for sure. The asanas we performed were generally gentle – except for goddess pose (phew I haven’t done that one in awhile!), but the challenge was nice. He ended the class with a bit of a yoga nidra type guidance, which I love while the owner of the studio played on a crystal bowl in the other room. Wow, I love the crystal bowls, the vibrations are so intense. Nice touch new studio, nice touch.
Afterwards, I felt great and relaxed. Very nice class and interesting to have this new experience. I believe I will be back, the meditative style of this class with a gentle yoga flow could be a nice addition to my practice. See, it didn’t hurt me to try something new… but I still feel like I “cheated” on my yoga studio – how do I get that feeling to go away? : ) ॐ
Have you ever been nervous trying a new style of yoga or studio? How did the experience turn out for you?