Adventures in Yoga Teacher Training- One Half-Inch Can Change Everything (Props Workshop)

oneikasyogalife, black women yoga, yoga, yoga props
photo credit livingitupall.com

Props workshop. Whoop!

I’d been looking forward to it for a few weeks. We were going to learn about how to use props with students. Lots of people are afraid to use yoga blocks or blankets to help with a pose. Assistance means weakness, and to so many yoga means being strong. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Props can be used for the inflexible, but they can also help any yogi feel a different sensation or hold a pose for a sustained period. The workshop was also taught by one of my favorite teachers so I was extra stoked (yeah, I’m tryin’ to bring ‘stoked’ back).

I was one of those people. Props were for punks. I’ve since learned the err of my ways. Doing chatarunga on blocks is no freaking joke. It’s only a few inches more but it makes all of the difference in the world when you are trying to push up. (Chatarunga and I also have a spotted past, but that’s a story for another day.) Let’s get back to the few inches.

My real transformations are measured in inches and not feet. Change is easy when it’s huge or thrust upon you. Marriage, job change, break-up and moving are big deal things that force us to deal with monumental shifts. But it’s the little changes, the incremental steps that take real commitment. Taking yourself to the gym each day, or promising to show up and be better person at work. Drinking 8 glasses of water every day. Or being better partner/parent by being more patient.  It’s easy to fall off the wagon with the little things. But in the end, the tiny changes provide our most eye opening experiences.

Throughout my life I realize that big deal moments were really a series of little ones. Some changes happened by accident, others took work. I wanted to be happy end the end of each day. Each morning I began to take stock of where I was and what I needed to do to be happy in the moment. This led to a larger life change with yoga.  And then teacher training and a new career.

You get my drift, pickin’ up what I’m puttin’ down etc…

Yoga raja kapotasana pigeon pose

Back to the workshop: 

While in pigeon pose I told D that I wasn’t feeling a stretch in front of my hips. Reluctantly, I asked for an adjustment, because it’s a pose that feels good, relaxing even.  D came behind me and reposititioned my hips one half-inch.

Oh. My. God.

‘This is why people struggle in this pose.’ I grumbled to myself.

Pigeon pose now sucks. The upside, it won’t forever. The challenge? Making sure I put my hips in that position every time I’m there. I know I will. If all of the little changes have brought me to a place where I’m happier than I’ve ever been before yoga, I can’t imagine that joy I’ll find now that yoga is in my life.

This is yoga. One half-inch at a time and I love it.

Namaste y’all.

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