The first time I saw AcroYoga was at the Yoga Journal Conference in Estes Park, Colorado, in 2008. (I first blogged about it here.) I remember watching the performance in the video below and being blown away by the grace and power.
I also remember being pretty sure I would never be able to practice AcroYoga.
Fast forward almost five years and I now can make a good, long list of things I thought I couldn't do that I've gone ahead and done anyway. The interesting thing about doing what you think you cannot is that once you do a few of those things, all the other ones seem much more possible.
(Hello, third Chakra.)
So, after watching AcroYoga videos with my yoga teacher trainees over lunch one day, I responded to their interest by saying, "I'll try to set up an AcroYoga workshop here." Never mind that I didn't actually know anyone who teaches AcroYoga or if anyone would want to come to our little town. That's what Facebook is for, right?
I connected with Catherine and Scott of Team WillCo. They made the trip. They are awesome AcroYoga teachers. And we had a great afternoon.
Remember how I thought I wouldn't be able to practice AcroYoga? I've got another thing to add to my list of things I've gone ahead and done anyway. I'll follow up with pictures and/or video later, but let's just say that at the end of the workshop the word that popped into my head was "wow."
My body is amazing. After many years of practicing yoga it still takes me to new places. Yoga gives me opportunities to be a confident beginner - to open to something new and sometimes scary knowing that whatever happens I can breathe through it. Fifteen years ago I breathed through my first Vinyasa class. Today it was inverting with my shoulders resting on someone's knees.
This is why I begin every class I teach with pranayama. If someone is on their yoga mat and focusing on their breath, I've done my job. Yes, I'll guide my class through asanas, but those are just opportunities to practice breathing. Oh, and to discover what their bodies can do, which is probably more than they think they can.
If you've been telling yourself that you cannot practice yoga, ask yourself this: "Can I breathe in? Can I breathe out?" (If you're reading this, you can.) Then come see me, or a yoga teacher who serves your community, and do what you think you cannot.
Thank you Scott and Cathy for coming north!