Have you ever had a yoga teacher come over to you in class and make some small, minor adjustment - perhaps asking you push your knee out against her hand, or push your head back into her hand, lift your rib cage into her hand - or even more cryptically, look right at you while giving an instruction you really thought you were already following? Something like, “Lift mula bandha,” or “Lift your back inner ankle,” in Warrior I, when, honest to goodness, you thought you already were.
Or maybe there’s a cue your teacher uses all the time that just seems mysterious, one of those things you eventually hear in your head just tooling around town?
In a group yoga class - even small groups, as we practice at Badlands Yoga - there often isn’t time to stop and explore the whys and wherefores of such instructions, much less what more you might do to feel it differently. And when we do take time, there’s not the opportunity for more personal exploration. If there’s a cue your yoga teacher gives repeatedly, I can guarantee there are layers of understanding, alignments and breath interactions that go along with that 3 word phrase.
This is just one of the many reasons that private yoga sessions are a terrific compliment to your group classes. So much good comes in small group yoga classes: the sense of community and togetherness is invaluable; the rhythm of breathing together is both calming and connecting; there’s a sense of being one of a crowd and led in practice that can have tremendous value at the end of a day, when you don’t really want the spotlight on you and just want to connect to breath and flow, following the sound of a trusted and familiar voice.
And in consultations you have the opportunity to go deeply into a single cue, pose or experience, to stay as long as necessary to tease out all its implications for now. Your needs drive the flow, so when you’re dealing with something specific - an injury or just an experience you live with and want to understand - you have the space and privacy to suss it out.
Private consultations are definitely more intensive and so cost more, but there are several ways to incorporate them that can make sense. Perhaps you schedule one every month or three months, like a check up or a check in. And small group coaching is a useful intermediate: there are more people at each session, but with the intention of going deeply into particular experiences, so the best of both worlds: affordable, personal, designed to compliment your regular practice.
Check out Healing Yoga for the New Year and Healing Yoga 2020 for online experiences blending the flow of practice through video with the personal consultation of private lessons via group calls twice per month. One is just two months and the other is a full year with a discount over taking the six individual modules - both give you 2 calls per month. You receive the well rounded rhythm of weekly practices that address every layer of your being and have your deepest questions, frustrations and wonderments addressed.