My Ashtanga Practice started in 2016. I went to a few Vinyasa Flow classes and one day, found myself at a LED Primary Class where I fell in love with the teacher and the practice. When I left that room, I was so scared to go see her on a daily practice so I developed an at home practice for nine months. From day one I knew that I wanted to have this practice in my life until I didn’t have an option. Ashtanga is a practice that is passed down from teacher to student, or parampara, which I loved. I never agreed with a 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training that magically made you into a teacher. The practice is evolving at all times and everyone’s body is different, so why would a 200 Hour YTT cover everything?
At Home Practice
We all love the energy of the Mysore Room! But the practice came to me at home in my bedroom, when I was alone. I was able to slowly start understanding my own body, my breath, my energetic blockages. Through the asanas, I gained an understanding of who I was. It took nine months of showing up to my mat six days a week learning the practice for me to go to a teacher, even though I already knew who my teacher would be. Maybe its just me, but I learn better when alone.
There were no distractions when I was by myself, this brought me to the understanding that this practice is more than Asana. Behind this practice there is a sense of calm, a healing energy. I believe that you experience a sense of self healing because you are forced to stare at yourself in the mirror through the physical practice. When you tune into the self and breathe, while incorporating the drishti, magic happens.
The Ashtanga Magic
I have always struggled with Anxiety and caring about what others thought. Ashtanga has helped me moved past these problems. How? Well to start off, I don’t think I learned how to breathe properly. With the five breath count of Ashtanga, it helped me to sit with being uncomfortable and breathing through it. Come on now, we’re binding our hands with both feet behind our head, then holding for five breaths! The breathing practice started happening in my life without me trying. Every situation that came up, I learned to accept and was able to ‘breathe through it’.
Feeling In Touch With ‘Something’
Practicing six days a week is tough, but it comes easy when you fall in love with the practice. I made the practice the time I got to spend with myself. My practice was slow, my breath was deep. My drishti, or gaze point, was where it was supposed to be. I loved the practice and it was enough. The Ashtanga practice took up my entire life, and slowly I started to develop and understand myself. Ashtanga was a part of me, and I was enough. Everything that I had cared about before just didn’t matter anymore. I developed a love for myself, I wasn’t chasing after materialism anymore. Life was enough, my life was enough.
For once in my life, I understood what it felt like to be grounded. Life felt secure, and through the practice I developed a mutual understanding of my body. I took care of my body and in turn, my body took care of me. My entire outlook changed. Meat products were no longer a thing for me, I cared about what I was putting my money into, I listened to what my body and intuition told me. The more I listened, the more it communicated to me.
Primary Series is Only the Beginning
The Primary Series had an affect on me that helped me feel in touch with myself, with the earth, and everything just seemed to be connected. I felt grounded and safe. The Primary Series has my heart. I started to blossom and speak my opinion more than I have ever before. Things started to come into my life as well as fall out of my life. At the end of each day I felt growth, on a personal, physical and spiritual level. Through the postures I developed a foundation to stand on and grow.