Off the Mat

I have this tendency to overdo things. I overdo things to the point that they get so overdone I stop doing them altogether. The last 8 weeks of this semester got a little nutty- I took on 6 more hours per week of teaching than I had expected to, and it’s totally backfired on me. While I certainly enjoy the income, I’ve managed to strain or pull or sprain or possibly tear a tendon in my proximal hamstring *the part of your hamstring that connects to your hip structure, you know kind of up in the bottom part of your butt). I thought at first I’d ignore it, long story short that didn’t work out well and I started having horrible sciatic pain. My chiropractor more or less put me on bed rest for a week. Well really he just told me no stretching it or working it, which for me is as bad as bed rest. I haven’t run, lifted, yoga’d, barely even broken a sweat since Wednesday morning (I snuck in my Pilates class before i saw the back cracker!) Besides me throwing a pity party for myself, I do have a point.

I can’t very well just cancel classes for a week or so, and thus I’ve learned to teach off my mat. In my BodySculpt class, or in interval training, it’s no biggie to instruct and not participate. Yoga is a different story. I’m used to participating with my classes. And let’s face it, most of us are pretty visual learners, especially when it’s something we’re doing with our bodies, contorting them into bends and twists and stretches all while concentrating on our breath. So this has been quite the learning experience not only for me but for my students as well. They are used to being able to look up and see where I am and what I’m doing at any given time. Now they have to learn to listen a little closer. To really focus on if I told them to move their left foot or their right, and if I said to place it on top of or behind the left or right arm. I do feel like even though it’s been difficult, this has made me a better instructor. I’ve had to think of different ways of cuing my students and I’ve also had more of a chance to walk around the room and make adjustments. I think has let me get to know my students a little better. I always take the time to make adjustments in class, but now I have the time to make even minor ones for people, which in yoga minor adjustments make a huge difference. 

I’m not entirely sure how much of a difference it’s making in my hamstring. It still hurts. Less sciatic pain, but still some. I see my chiropractor again tomorrow so hopefully we’ll get some major improvement. Until then, I’ll still be off my mat, and learning.

Namaste.

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