I have been frequently practicing at a yoga studio here in Davis, and today, the owner and the teacher I most frequently go to, commented on my attendance. “You’re becoming a regular here, huh, Leila?” I was so happy she noticed. I’m a Kia devotee now; so much of what she says and the way she teaches speaks to how I want to learn, and would someday like to teach, yoga. The fact that she has learned my name (and is pronouncing it correctly) is making me feel at home there.
Last week in one of her Level 2 Vinyasasa classes (kicking my ass, Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:30-7), Kia talked about how traditionally, yoga was practiced in solitude. To have a yoga community, a kula, to practice with is a much more recent invention, but I find it makes all the difference in getting me to expand and grow in my practice.
“Everything is yoga, everything is a pose,” Kia says. “You’re not doing bad yoga. Just go to your edge, go to your version of the pose, how it is best suiting you today.” She encourages her students to do what feels right, as long as they are doing it with intention and in the moment. I love this kind of nurturing, supportive, and adaptable teaching style, and I think more yogis could benefit from it.
I love putting yoga photos on Instagram. I think that the presence of an international online yogi community is very cool. But sometimes, in taking pictures for various challenges, I have noticed that I become fixed on a certain outcome. My ego, as Kia would say, is attached to what I see in pictures as “The Pose.” Because of this, I have been thinking about making sure that when I take inspiration from Instagram that I integrate it into my practice in the best way for me, not in exactly the same way someone else did it.
I am so happy that I have a studio to go to, and amazing teachers (not just Kia, they are all great) to help lead me on my yoga journey. I’m sure I’ll learn even more as I go along.