I had two new students in my Level 1-2 class the other day, a young man and a woman who arrived together. It was their first yoga class ever. I welcomed them, got them situated and took them to the upstairs studio. I showed them the props and helped them get set up for class. “This is a little intimidating,” the woman said, as I handed her a strap. I asked her why. “Because I’m not sure what I’m doing.”
Her frank honesty reminded me of what it can be like for a total beginner to step into a yoga studio. I didn’t tell her that I often feel just as intimidated as a teacher and am often not sure what I’m doing, either. I reassured her that she would be fine and that we’d take good care of her.
Donna Farhi says that teaching yoga is like “holding a heart in our hands.” If I thought about this too long, I’d probably never teach. But students like this young woman remind me why I do. I’m grateful to receive the grace of her bravery and trust, and hope to live up to them.