the pre-journey questionnaire

i do yoga because i need the breathing exercises to help me stay calm, and i need the stretching to stay limber, and the asana to stay fit. yoga helps me in my massage practice, as i use yoga to stay grounded and aware of my body mechanics. i also use yoga as homework for my clients. i am a believer in the power of yoga to heal the body and mind.

i started formally practicing yoga in 2004, but had been familiar with yoga philosophy for years before that. the time came during my divorce where the daily practice gave me something to feel good about. as i felt my body growing stronger my heart and mind grew stronger too. for several years i practiced in the studio 2 or 3 times a week, and had a vigorous home practice as well. i started a yoga therapy certification program 2 years ago, and plan to finish that next april.

my yoga practice today is growing from one of mostly restorative poses and yoga nidra to a more active practice, with some hitches along the way. i had surgery last january, and for the last few years have been recovering from complex-ptsd, which has sapped my energy and vitality. for months on end i have felt unable to perform many of my regular daily activities. since my hysterectomy, i have been growing stronger inside and out, and the regular disciplined practice required by this It’s All Yoga teacher training program has been good for me. it feels good to be moving again. i generally practice several days a week, though some days all i do is yoga nidra around bedtime. my best days, i do about an hour of restorative at home. it could be more comprehensive, though i do feel ready for a more active practice.

ideally i would like to see myself practice yoga every day, but realistically 5 days a week. it’s easier to accomplish at home when nobody else is here, so mornings after the family have left for work and school is ideal.

my obstacles have mainly been in my own mind. recovering from ptsd has had alot of ups & downs, but the last 12 months the general trajectory has been upward. i feel my obstacles clearing away.

my weakest area physically is likely my core, as for several months after my hysterectomy i found myself hunching over protectively at the low belly. i feel it in my left foot, up that hip and low back. i also have a little issue in my right shoulder around the AC joint, injured 7 years ago and i tweaked it again a few months ago, so my arm strength isn’t the best. but i have strong legs, and am very flexible. i also practice a type of working pranayama when i am practicing massage with clients. i find it helps me stay grounded while helping my clients find their own breath.

i find yoga philosophy very easy to understand, not always so easy to practice. tadasana is hard for me, my shoulders rarely want to stay tucked in. pidgeon pose has always been hard, but for some reason feels like it is getting easier lately. arm balances are a big challenge, as i am overweight and feel like my balance is off. forward bends have always been easy for me.

where do i need the most assistance? hmm. i am stumped here. moving on to the next question until something comes to mind. ***SELF-LOVE AND ACCEPTANCE. THIS IS WHERE I NEED THE MOST HELP. TO LEARN TO LOVE MYSELF AS I AM. AND CONGRATULATE MYSELF FOR HOW I SHOW UP.

i do practice meditation, lately my favorite way to practice is yoga nidra. it has really helped my state of mind, and general calmness. i like to meditate though, and will take a moment to clear my mind and breath often throughout my regular work day.

i have recently created an asana space in my bedroom, just large enough for my mat and comfortable movement in any position, with a bookcase and a comfortable chair so i can switch from asana to yoga study without having to leave the room. the chair also doubles as a prop, i often use it it constructive rest with my legs on the chair. sometimes i cross my legs up it in a modified reclining bound angle. i also have my choice of 3 doors to put my legs up (instead of a wall) for those times i want to do viparita karani, usually after work.

my weight affects my practice. when i feel fat it’s hard to show up. fortunately i am beginning to feel fit again. my house is a mess. it’s chaotic. dogs. husband. blended family. sometimes i feel that because i have no control over the things around me i can’t do anything. that too is seeing improvement though.

i hope to use this class to grow personally and professionally. i want to finish yoga therapy training, and needed this as a foundation. but i am finding along the way that i might actually LIKE teaching! maybe i will pause for awhile at teaching while i learn how to be a yoga therapist. i hope to feel more comfortable in my own body and mind by the end of this program.


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