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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Don't worry Alissa, this isn't about you.

About a month ago in one of my yoga classes, I asked a practitioner if I could adjust her pose for her. She obliged and I explained what I was doing and helped coax her arms into a more appropriate downward dog.

As we all went through the Sun Salutations again, I noticed that the practitioner was still doing the pose incorrectly, so once again I went to her and asked if I could adjust her. She said yes and I explained what I was doing with different cues and hoped that would help.

When she did the pose incorrectly a third time, I just let it be. She wasn't going to injure herself, but she was bringing unnecessary strain on her wrists. Additionally, when the pose is done correctly, it's a little more challenging, so I understand why it can be hard to commit to an adjustment. I didn't want to embarrass her, but I wanted to ensure she learned how to improve herself.

I can't stop thinking about it though. I just want people to learn more about Yoga and why we do things a certain way, and how we can maximize our practice based on our need that particular day.

What would you have done if you were in my shoes? How would you feel if an instructor discreetly approached you with advice on your alignment during a workout?

4 comments:

  1. I probably would have done the same thing. I would want to be corrected a few times, but too many times would make me feel like an idiot, esp. in a class setting. If it were one-on-one I would definitely want to be corrected more and learn better, but with other people, sometimes I would rather just get through it than be singled out too many times.

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  2. Personally, I LOVE receiving extra help or pointers from the instructor. But maybe because, after practicing for 7 years, I realize that even minor imperfections can drastically change the pose's difficulty, benefits and intention. #humblebrag

    If I were the student, I would've wanted you to keep correcting me, but maybe in a more casual way. Maybe laugh the whole thing off like, "Oh, gosh, Heather, your Down Dog will get there some day, so keep trying!"

    But, that's me. I've come to realize I'm sort of a weirdo. So, you probably did the exact right thing.

    How sweet is it that you're still thinking about it, though!? Great teacher!

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  3. i would have wanted to be corrected, but too many times would be embarrassing. i hate it when you go to a yoga class and the instructor is just into her own practice and never walks around to make sure you are doing it right. whats worse is when they tell you that youre doing it wrong and never swing by again be sure you understood the correction.

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  4. hahaha, thank you for clarifying that it wasn't me. Yeah, I would have done what you did. I would have let it be.

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