Sunday, June 9, 2013

YogaFit Training: Level 3 (MBF Minneapolis)


I was able to attend YogaFit’s Mind Body Fitness (MBF) in Minneapolis recently.    You can read about my experience with Level 1Training in Feb here, which inspired me to take the opportunity to attend a full conference.   Level 2 is the previous post.

Level 3 was Thursday and Friday, the start of what was going to be a very full weekend.  The days are well structured and very well run – which is one of the things that I like about the YogaFit trainings.  They give you the class format and they stick to the class format.   It’s a combination of discussion/lecture, movement, and small group work. 

Level  Three emphasizes “Introspection”.  The session starts out with a review of the YogaFit Essence, YogaFit workout, and  Seven Principles of Alignment, and which are all a review of what was introduced Level 1 and Level 2 and will continue to be a solid and integral part of the YogaFit system. 

I already discussed how a training day progresses in Level 1 and 2: discussion, workout, small breakout groups.  Same format here.  I do like the consistency and breaks are incorporated right in.  No need to worry that you won’t get that bathroom run in or time for munchies. 

In two days, we covered:
The Paths of Yoga (Raja, Karma, Jnana, Bhakti)
Meditation
Pranayama
Bandha’s  
The Mind-Body connection (le brain)
Chakras
Level 3 poses and adjustments

I really enjoyed the Level 3 session – it was a group of engaging people and a very knowledgeable instructor.  Still a fair amount of review for me, but not nearly as much as Level 2.   The Chakras were not as hokey as I thought they would be and I actually would have liked a bit more breakdown than we got.  Again, I thought there wasn’t enough emphasis on the poses and adjustments, but that might be my background coming through.  A downside of coming into this training with 9 years of teaching experience – I’m not a beginning yoga instructor anymore. 

I have mixed thoughts on the breathwork – I don’t think there was enough discussion on when to incorporate and how to incorporate the breathwork.  Having done this as part of an Iyengar-style class I used to take, it was very methodical and structured.  What I’m seeing from YogaFit trained instructors in my area is the breath is just ‘tacked on’ in the beginning with no regard to how long or an explanation to the class of why.  It’s done because the instructor was told to do it.   So while I liked the review, the pranayama as taught and being part of a flow class remains questionable to me. 

I’m looking forward to taking Level 4. 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

YogaFit Training: Level 2 (Minneapolis MBF)


I was able to attend YogaFit’s Mind Body Fitness (MBF) in Minneapolis this past weekend.    You can read about my experience with Level 1Training in February here in Duluth, which inspired me to take the opportunity to attend a full conference in Minneapolis. 

Level 2 was Saturday and Sunday, a very full two day session.  The days are well structured and very well run  – which is one of the things that I like about the YogaFit trainings.  They give you the class format and they stick to the class format.   It’s a combination of discussion/lecture, movement, and small group work. 

Level 2 emphasizes “Communication”.  The session starts out with a review of the YogaFit Principles, Essence, Transformational Language, “PEP” Language (positive expression) which are all a review of what was introduced Level 1 and will continue to be a solid and integral part of the YogaFit system. 

After about an hour, we transitioned into a “Master Class”, where the instructor takes the attendees through a yoga class incorporating the levels lessons and postures which will be discussed and broken down later in the afternoon or the next day.  I LOVE this hour.  To be able to see and feel how all of the teachings are being pulled together is fantastic.  My only complaint was the instructor turned the lights off in the room.  Being in a hotel conference space, way up in a front corner, and the only light coming from the hallway was not cool.  I get nauseous easily when I can’t see while moving and balancing. 

Once the Master Class is finished, a new concept is introduced (depending on how familiar one is with yoga, it might be a review of a known aspect)  and then we break for lunch. 

After lunch, there is another hour of discussion/lecture - and by this I mean that the instructors encourage a give and take from the group, that it’s not a straight hour of someone sitting at the front of the room reading from the manual - before we break into small groups for pose breakdown.  Class concludes with further discussion on another topic.

Things we covered included:
Yogic Philosophy – YogaFit philosophy, 8 Limbs of Yoga, Yamas and Niyamas
Positive Thinking
Awareness Process
Qualities of an Instructor
Visual/Auditory/Kinesetic Learning (VAK)
Level 2 Poses

My overall impressions – it was a good session.  It was also 80% of a review for me and there is nothing wrong with a solid review.  I am pretty well versed in the poses we covered (and a bit shocked at some they were incorporating at this level.  I don’t do them in my classes unless I have the right group of people), I have a solid grasp of the 8 Limbed Path and the Yamas and Niyamas from my first teacher training and subsequent philosophy workshops.  I should add that I am e-RYT200 and have nine years of teaching experience.

I did think the pose breakdown was way too basic; I thought we should have discussed how to enter/exit the pose safely, the mechanics of staying in the pose and alternatives.   But perhaps that would have been information overload for where the other attendees were at?  Still, now is the time to emphasize this information in my opinion.  

I continue to recommend the YogaFit training system.