Yoga Trance dance certification, or Sahaja Vinyasa.

Right after I was done with my 200 hours teacher training, I still had some time left in LA, and I decided to do another training, with the great Shiva Rea. I don’t know if everybody knows about her, but she is an amazing yoga teacher who leads THE Prana flow certification. I used to take a few classes with her every time I was in LA, and I was always blown away by how fast she build up the fire in our bodies, how “flowy” her classes are, how intense is the energy that came out of the group she leads. So when I heard that she was leading a small 30 hours training in Exhale Venice, I immediately signed up.

I’ve never heard about Yoga Trance Dance before, so I had no idea what I was going to learn, but I trusted her. After those 9 weeks of training I was kind of exhausted, and I had a bad cold, so I was far from being 100% in the class, but It was worth the shot! I can safely say that Oregano oil and sweating from all the dancing made me recover from my cold faster faster than I thought.

What is Yoga Trance dance? To quote Shiva “Yoga Trance dance is a meeting of two great rivers, yoga and dance.” Yoga in the beginning allows us to be present in our bodies, to feel the prana, it prepares us to go deeper in a free-form dance that helps us to release many things and allows us to find ourselves, into the power of the flow.

Even in the history of yoga you find Lord Shiva (how ironic?) who is seen as the first teacher of both yoga and dance. We have to keep in mind that a yoga pose was named after him: Natarajasana the lord of the dance.

So let’s just say, to keep it simple that the yoga trance dance is a form of yoga that with the helps of rhythm drives us to a free-form dance, a meditative trance, who allows us to experience the “unified self that is yoga”.

Sahaja is a Sanskrit word that means “spontaneous, natural, simple, or easy”, and it describes perfectly what is yoga trance dance, while starting with yoga poses we slowly goes to a spontaneous and natural form of flow.

On the Saturday evening we hosted a Yoga Trance dance for every people who wanted to join, and we were lucky to have live music from the amazing CC White and her band. Seriously, if you’ve never heard of CC White, I invite you to check her( CC White) you will thank me later! I loved how Shiva organized this by starting only with us (the students in the  teacher training), and sharing this moment of intimacy before the doors open to the public. It might be nothing but it made us feel special.

Sharing those intense moment with this great teacher made me want to pursue my yoga journey with her, so I’ve signed for the rest of he Prana flow certification. I wanted to achieve the 500h to be an advanced yoga teacher anyway. 200h is great but Yoga is such a big thing I have the feeling I will be both a student and a teacher for the rest of my life.

Stay tuned for more yoga adventures!

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Prenatal yoga fun!

Last Sunday we had a lot of fun learning how to teach a prenatal yoga class. Our teacher picked a guy in the room to be the pregnant woman and with the help of a block underneath his tee-shit, Sean looked like he was almost ready to pop!!!

Pregnant women can totally go on with their practice (unless their doctor is opposed to it of course), but there are a few rules to follow:

Continue reading “Prenatal yoga fun!”

Workshops at the teacher training.

 Last week-end was week-end 7 already (Time flies!!!), and we had people from outside on saturday and sunday who came to share their knowledge with us.

We actually already had an outside speaker the previous week-end, when i say outside I mean not in the training, but she’s actually a teacher at Yoga salt where the training takes place. Her name is Audra, and she was great. She talked to us about alignment, smart flow and how to build sequences. It was super interesting. She took her training with the famous Annie Carpenter, the goddess of alignment, and she was kind enough to share with us some key elements for a great yoga practice.

The firs guy who came to talked to us on Saturday, was teaching us how to act as a teacher with the students, the do and don’t, the kind of behavior you can have, how to react in certain situations…. It was kind of interesting, even tho pretty obvious most of the time. He was a yoga teacher too, but I was a little bit surprised by his way of addressing his advice to us. He was kind of aggressive, not intentionally, but it made the all thing awkward.

On the other hand on Sunday, we were lucky enough to have a 2 hours inversions workshop by the amazing Sean Gray.It was a delight, well at least for me, because I love inversions. I’ve learned so many things about handstand, forearms stand, tripod, head stand and shoulders stand, it was amazing.

I’m all for practicing Pinchamayurasana at the moment. I wasn’t practicing this inversion until my trip in New-York and my visit at the Jivamukti Yoga school. In that studio they practice serious inversions, and you’re not allowed to use the wall. It’s when I realized I had to work on my Pincha. It is a very tricky one as you are supposed to keep your forearms parallel to each other, which makes it harder.

I’m so grateful for the planning of this teacher training. I’m learning so many things at the moment, my practice is deepen, my mind is open, and I couldn’t be happier. I hope that by sharing my experience I’ll inspire the yoginis who read me to think about doing a thing like this.

In the meantime stay tuned! Namaste.

Birthday shenanigans

2 weeks ago it was my birthday. I usually love to celebrate with a big party, but since it was in the middle of the teacher training, I just organized a little get together with my friends here in LA. It was so nice for once to celebrate with them, since I’m usually in my country for this event.

I was super happy because my boyfriend came all the way from Europe to celebrate with me. I wasn’t really comfortable sharing this with my other teacher trainees, because I don’t know them that much and I didn’t think they would be interested. But in the training with me, there is my dear friend Isabel, and she’s not the kind of person who takes no for an answer.

I was suspicious that something might be organized behind my back, specially because I discovered that it was Rochelle’s (another trainee) birthday too. The D-day I received a message from Tamal, our teacher, and it became more and more obvious that something was going to happened. So when I stepped in the studio and that half of my fellow trainees came to hug me and wish me the best for this special day, I had no doubt that a cake will be involved at some point!

During our break they bring us the most delicious vegan cheesecake made by Sean, Rochelle and I were so happy. Stephen made me do acro yoga, we laughed a lot. I was really surprised by that kindness and generosity from people I’ve known for only 6 weeks! And that’s what the teacher training is about too: Bonding with some extraordinary people who share the same passion as you. I’m so grateful for that. Not only my practice is deepen in a way I couldn’t even dream of a year ago, but I hope I have found new friends for life!!

Of course Tamal quickly reminded us that it was training time, and I had the chance to practice inversions and arm balances for 2h30, and it was totally ok because I love that!!

Stay tuned for more shenanigans! Namaste.

How healthy food is a touchy subject!

I’ve decided to write this post because I am really surprised with the comments I had or saw on some other people posts regarding the subject of food.

It all started at my yoga teacher training when we talked about Patanjali’s sutra: Ahimsa (non harming), and the fact that being vegan was the answer for those who wanted to apply those sutras to their life.

We watched a few documentary too about how livestock was horribly mistreated, and about how we could solve the world hunger by having a  plants based alimentation. I shared those documentary and my own experience of being vegetarian on facebook and other social media, and that’s when it all started. People were mocking me, making bad jokes on vegan, some of them were even mean, and when I tried to respond with some good arguments, most of the time I faced passive agressivity from the other party. 

I witnessed that on other friend’s wall too, and I realize that the subject of food is not an easy one, just like religion, or same sex marriage.

People don’t like change and even tho you prove them with strong arguments that it is inevitable if we want to keep our planet liveable, they talk about utopia, or they’d rather ignore the truth and make no sacrifice, even tho their own children will probably pay the price of their selfishness.

I’m glad this training opened my eyes on this issue. I’ve read somewhere that doing a yoga teacher training might change you, well, it does. I just hope that (very) soon my fellow human beings will have the chance to have that kind of epiphany too.

In the meantime do a lot of yoga. Drink a lot of water, eat healthy! 

Stay tuned! Namaste!



https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=uQCe4qEexjc

Save the ocean!

Last week-end was a treat. On Friday I’ve decided to take the level 2/3 class that Tamal teaches before the teacher training, and it felt good! Like REALLY good! Since I’ve started the training I’ve taken many advanced classes, to improve my practice, challenge myself and mostly because back in my country i won’t have the oppotunity to follow this kind of classes. Tamal’s was one of my favourite, probably because of the handstand practice. You barely have a chance to practice handstands in regular classes, and I love that pose. It teaches me how to be more focus, and how to use my core. 

Speaking of core we had a great session about anatomy, watching videos. It is so important to understand how the body works, i finally know what’s the difference between tendons and ligaments lol. And now I have a better understanding of the poses.

We also kept practicing teaching on each other and I really start to like it.  Plus it makes me do some incredible improvements in my practice. For example knowing how to teach urdhva dhanurasana made me understand my own mistakes and now that i’ve corrected myself it looks and feels so much better!

Sunday was the highlight of the week-end: as part of the training, we had to volunteer for 2 hours to clean the beach. I found the idea awesome. Most of the trainees were there and some other people. Someone found a bone, like a big white bone, we all speculated on what kind of bone it was (i guess we might need some more anatomy classes!!).

 The top 3 of the things i found were cigarette butts (smokers pollute our air AND our beach! Seriously? Quit!), plastic bottles tops, and straws (the kind your kids use to drink juices in those little boxes…).

Then we had this amazing philosophy talk about reincarnation and Karma. Yoga philosophy is so interesting and profund! I really enjoy it. It makes me see the world from a different angle. 

I can’t wait for this week-end talk: the need of stop eating meat for our sake and the sake of our planet. 

Stay tuned! Namaste!



Week-end 3: It’s getting serious!

Week-end 3 was a good one, intense, interesting…

On Friday we had a class of anatomy. I thought it would be harder than that as english is not my first language, but it was ok.
Anatomy is so important for a yoga teacher. You need to understand the pose to get the most benefits of it. And of course you don’t want to injure your yoginis!
Anatomy helps you to understand the best alignment, and again this is really important. You want to know why your back foot is open at 45 degres in warrior 1, and you want to be able to explain it if somebody ask.

We practiced a lot too! We practice the postures and we practice how to teach the postures. This too will improve my yoga. Now when I go to a class I keep adjusting myself to be better in my posture, which can means to refrain to touch the ground with my hand in triangle pose for example, because by doing this I don’t open my chest that much.

Learning how to teach is fascinating. You have a choice to make, are you going to say all the details of the pose or are you just going to ask your yoginis to do it, assuming they will know how to do it (bandas, alignment…). I personnaly give some details but not too much, because when I’m in a class and the teacher starts to give many info on the anatomy I space out, and she or he loses my interest. I guess it’s different whether you teach a class or a private .

Sundays are made for philosophy. Because yoga is not only a work out, it’s so much deeper than that. We learned how to meditate, by chanting, or saying mantras, or using the malas. I personnaly meditate every morning since a few month and I feel great!
Meditating with the beads is a little bit hard for me, but I do it every day now, so I’m surr it will come up.

We also had a class about ayurveda. It was fun to find out about our dosha, (I am a Pitah) and what we can do to improve our health using ayurvedic medicine.

My entire body is sore with all the classes I take my brain is full of new information but my heart is enlightened! I love my teacher training!

This week-end we’ll help a non profit to clean the beach, it’s part of the training. I’m looking forward to it. Stay tuned!

Namaste!

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Week 1! Practice practice Practice!!

Last week-end, the first one of my yoga teacher training, Tamal said that we need to take at least 3 classes per week, and keep a kind of journal, with all the observations and comments about how the teacher was actually teaching the class, the theme of it….
I’m in LA one of the best (if not the best) city in the West for Yoga, and there are so many great teachers in this town that I’ve decided to take their class, to learn from the best!

It all started on Sunday night, after the training with a well deserved Yin yoga class, by Amy at Yoga Salt (www.yogasalt.com) What is Yin yoga: Yin yoga is a slow-paced style of yoga with poses, or asanas, that are held for longer periods of time—five minutes or longer per pose is typical. (Source: Wikipedia). It really helps to open your body and relax. And, oh boy, Amy knows how to let you go deeper in the pose and relax. She even gives you massage while you’re holding it. It’s pure bliss!

And then I discovered that the world famous Shiva Rea was in town. I already took a class with her last year, and enjoyed it, so I’ve decided to take every class she was teaching during the week.
Who is Shiva Rea: She is the founder of Prana Vinyasa Flow Yoga, an energetic, creative, full-spectrum approach to embodying the flow of yoga, and she is just amazing. Her classes are unique. Breating and moving are the key of her class, which is great because one of the first thing we learned at the training was how to breathe properly. It’s so important. Well, Shiva takes the breathing to another level and it’s quite amazing. Her classes are very spiritual and intense. I liked it so much that I registered for an other training with her after this one. I told you I want to learn from the best!!

My body might be sore after all those classes but my heart is light, and that’s why I’m happy to start the second week-end of my training!

Stay tuned!

Namaste!

First Week-end!

It is funny how even now As an adult, i feel the same way starting this training as I felt when I was a teenager on a go back to school day.
I look at the other people, trying to figure out which one will become my friends, not sure how to introduce myself or what to tell them.

Tamal is the sweetest guy and an amazing teacher. This guy could easily be an actor. He knows how to entertain a crowd. I was interested by everything he said, including philosophy which was definitely not my cup of tea back in the days.

The first evening went by quite fast, we just introduced ourselves, he gave us books and a mala, explained what was expected from us. I thought we would practice yoga but we didn’t.

I like how we start the classes, holding hands, breathing and chanting OM, and then giving hugs.

The good news is we will have to take some classes from other teachers, and write observations about the way they teach. It’s interesting. They are so many amazing yoga teachers in this town, that it will be a great source of inspiration.

The bad news is we do have homeworks!!! Well not so bad tho, they are quite easy and ineresting, so far. And as my training takes place in LA, i do my homeworks on the beach, and this is priceless!!

So far so good! Stay tuned

Namaste

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H – 8

Who said you were old at 40? My life is actually starting now. I mean, i did a lot of stuff before,: i had a kid, went to College, graduated in business Law, traveled the world… But something was missing.
Four years ago, my good friend Isabel dragged me to a yoga class and I immediately felt the benefits of it.
At that time I was struggling because my beloved aunt had just been diagnosed with pancreas cancer, and I loved her so much I couldn’t face the fact that I might lose her.
So yoga came in my life just like a benediction.
And here I am now, 4 years later. My aunt is gone, but I’ve found peace. So, I’ve decided to deepen my practice by doing a teacher training.

I chose to follow Tamal Dodge program, I took a few classes with him when he was teaching at Yoga Collective in Venice, Ca, (www.yogacollective.com) and I loved it. He teaches a dynamic kind of yoga: Power vinyasa. He learned from the best and is a great teacher himself. He grew up in an Ashram in Hawaï, so yoga has always been part of his life. I’m really looking forward to it.

When I woke up this morning i opened my computer just to see that I won a yoga challenge on Instagram, it’s nothing important, really, but I took it as a sign: i’m on the right path.

Clock is ticking now, the training starts in 8 hours.

Stay tuned!

Namaste

For more cheyenne yoga: http://instagram.com/cheyenne.yoga/IMG_3036