Geoffrey Prather wasn’t your typical YWTT candidate. A YogaWorks worker on the company workplace who produces video content material for YogaWorks.com, he first got here to yoga as many individuals do—to get a good “workout.”
“I had been practicing yoga pretty regularly since 2013,” says Prather, 36, who lives in Los Angeles. “I got into the harder slow classes looking to get a workout and sweat, and transitioned into Iyengar stuff, Hatha yoga. I wanted to understand the poses a little more, the alignment.”
So this previous fall—with no plans to turn out to be a yoga instructor—he determined “on a whim” to join a 200-hour, three-month long, every-weekend YogaWorks teacher training, which concluded in early December.
“I decided to do it because the teacher, Mia Togo, made sense for me,” Prather tells Yoga Journal. “I like how she blends in philosophy with asana. It’s not all about the physical practice—it makes you think about spirituality, and allows you to think about where you’re at in your life rather than just getting a burn/getting in better shape.”
However, signing up for a YWTT as somebody who did NOT plan to train yoga, however simply needed it to perceive it higher, had him feeling fairly misplaced—at first.
“A lot of people had been practicing a lot longer than I had, and knew a lot more about asana and philosophy,” Prather concedes. “I felt a little bit like, ‘What am I doing here?'”
He was additionally stunned by how difficult the course was, each bodily and past.
“You practice 2-3 hour classes, usually both weekend days, and that’s a lot. It was 12 weekends every weekend. You’re also doing poses in a way that’s more involved.”
The YogaWorks YWTT is totally different from different YTTs in its specificity relating to alignment, Prather explains. “It’s intensive and in-depth, and shows you what yoga can provide emotionally, mentally, and physically. You’re not pushing yourself into poses, but meeting your body where it’s at and being OK with that. I realized I’d been doing a lot of the poses completely wrong, and pushing my body further than I needed to, putting myself at risk. It’s amazing how much detail the YogaWorks YWTT goes into in order to let you access the poses safely, but also while building strength and greater flexibility. I had torn my rotator cuff twice while playing sports as a teenager, and a lot of poses demand a lot of the shoulders. I learned new tools and modifications to protect myself. The YWTT gives you the opportunity to digest that stuff and incorporate it into your practice.”
As far because the philosophy factor of the training goes, Prather says he was stunned by how “confronting” it was.
“Yoga expects you to let go of things and be present in the moment in order to live a healthy life. Non-attachment, being disciplined, being mindful of all your choices, is a hard thing for a lot of people to do.”
He was additionally a little shocked by how a lot “sharing” was anticipated of him within the class of 32 individuals.
“You share stories in Sutra circles (where you take a Yoga Sutra and talk about how it applies to your life), and some are revealing. I’m not a big sharer, and people really poured their hearts out. To a degree, this was confronting for me, because I don’t do that. It made me uncomfortable, but not in a bad way. I realized, ‘Why shouldn’t I be more open?’ It’s a beautiful thing. It’s probably going to be a long process, but I’ve definitely tried to apply a lot of the Sutras to my life.”
Midway by means of the YWTT, Prather realized how a lot he seemed ahead to seeing his fellow trainees, who have been strangers solely weeks in the past.
“You get to know people and look forward to seeing those people. When it’s over, you’re getting a big chunk of your life back, but you’re also saying goodbye to people who had a big impact on your life. However, I’ve stayed in touch with several of them and consider them wonderful friends.”
And whereas he nonetheless does not plan to turn into a yoga instructor, he “100 percent” recommends the training to anybody who needs to perceive yoga higher and find out how to apply extra safely.
“You will be challenged, and you will have times when you want to bail, but if you stick with it it’s rewarding in the end. You will get your money’s worth for sure.”