Teaching yoga in France Feedback
Rosa is a yoga teacher. She has followed many yoga courses and is specialized in several styles. In this article, she talks about her journey as a yoga teacher. She gives tips and tricks for those who wish to teach yoga.
Teaching yoga in France Feedback
Can you introduce yourself in a few lines?
My name is Rosa Aguilera (yes, that's my real name). I was born in Seville in the South of Spain, 40 years ago. I have dedicated more than 20 years to work in the movement. I work as an actress, teacher and artistic director in physical theater, circus and dance since the year 2000. I am also a yoga teacher since 2005.
How did you discover yoga?
I discovered Yoga in India. Through a scholarship to learn Indian dance and theater. It was a balm for my body, my soul and my spirit. On this trip, I trained at Hatha Yoga in Varanasi.
How did you become a yoga teacher?
I started teaching Hatha in a small group when I came back from India, there is now 15! I taught friends and people in my neighborhood. Then, I formed a stronger group and taught for 5 years, for free.
I did not want to mix the financial aspect with my practice. But since I taught drama and circus since 20 years, I finally made the transition.
I started teaching as a paid yoga teacher in 2011. I gave yoga classes in Switzerland, Spain, France and Africa. With very different audiences, from all walks of life. The transition took another 5 years.
Since 2016, I have dedicated myself to transmitting yoga full time. I also enjoy training yoga teachers.
How did you choose your yoga training?
I must say that I chose my training a bit by chance. I was in Varanasi and a friend encouraged me. I had a big crash 6 months before. Hatha yoga changed my life and gave me hope.
I followed many yoga classes after that, I chose them for other reasons. But I'm still my instinct!
What made you want to teach yoga?
I have always been fascinated by the transmission of knowledge and I like having direct contact with people. I had noticed it when I worked in the theater and circus.
I really like helping others, guiding them, accompanying them and seeing them grow up. As adults we do not grow outside anymore but inside we have a whole world to discover, to conquer, to develop.
I am passionate about culture and spirituality, especially Indian. Yoga brings together movement, singing, study of philosophy, health ... so many important fields for me, it is an inexhaustible source because we are always in learning.
What types of yoga do you teach?
I teach Hatha, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Aerial Yoga and finally Acroyoga. I have influences from Kundalini and Iyengar. I love Bhakti and I am of Tantric tradition.
You have followed many yoga courses, can you tell us more?
I practice yoga for more than 10 years, discovering Kundalini Yoga in Barcelona; Iyengar Yoga with Angelo Cecchi, Acroyoga with Jason Nemer and Pau Castellsague. Later I train in Acroyoga with Andrea and Slava and with Acroyogathai in Barcelona. In 2009 I train at Thai Massage Om Shanti in Girona, and 2015, I do two courses in Ashtanga Yoga and Pedagogy with Ashtanga Yoga Inbound Barcelona. I continued to train in with Petri Rainsanen, Manju Jois, Vijay Kumar and David Garrigues in Marseille and Paris. In July 2019 I do a new Acroyoga teacher training in Annecy with Acroyoga International, and a specialization in Advanced Acroyoga.
Can you tell us more about each style of yoga?
Of course ! Then all yogas share the basics: Asana, Pranayama, Mantra, Meditation and relaxation.
In Hatha we practice more traditional way. Hatha is a tantric method that allows everyone to get closer to very deep knowledge, which was restricted to dedicated people. In a Hatha class, you start with a little philosophy, an intention or Sankalpa, then a mantra. Asanas are maintained for at least 10 breaths. We discuss breathing and energy exercises (pranayama) to finish relaxation. Sometimes also with a meditation.
Ashtanga Vinyasa is a modern method that is less than 100 years old. I love the simplicity and the rigor of this discipline that is based on series dedicated to develop a quality. The Ashtanga is faster and more dynamic, allows to work the cardio. We practice with a pranayama (ujjaji) and there is usually a mantra that opens and another that closes the session. After 5 greetings To and 5 B (Surya Namaskar), we continue with the series (there are 6 series). The course ends with the final positions and a relaxation. The Ashtanga is quite ritualized and can be practiced of autonomous form (mysore style), with some adjustments of the prof.
Vinyasa is a fairly free variant of Hatha in which importance is given to the flow, the sequence of postures with the breath. Often practiced in music, it is a more creative yoga that can vary according to the style of the teacher. In my classes, I create a contemporary version of Hatha with choreographic sessions that connect asanas to deep and sometimes daily themes. I like to illustrate the practice with stories or anecdotes, to work on self-development, emotions, self-knowledge.
In aerial yoga we work in the same way as in Vinyasa, but hang in a hammock. Weightlessness and inversions characterize this very new style, derived from the circus and embellished with dance and yoga. It is a great opportunity to discover and overcome fears, to work flexibility, strength and coordination. It is a playful and feminine style.
Acroyoga is a sharing practice. A marriage between circus two acrobatics, Thai massage and yoga. I especially like his happy side and the cooperation work, as well as the contact. It's a less individualistic style. It helps tremendously to overcome fears, to trust others and to let go. The solar variant is more athletic and the lunar a very pleasant floating massage. A yoga to understand that we reach further with others than alone.
I also take my adjustments of Iyengar, Kriyas and mantras of Kundalini and the taste for life of Tantrism.
What is your favorite thing when you teach yoga?
When I take pleasure in imagining a course and I feel inspired. When the practice changes people's lives and they are autonomous, healthier and fulfilled. See the emotions appear, receive the returns of yogis and yoginis, create a Kula (community).
What is the biggest challenge for you when giving yoga classes?
What we teach comes from a very different culture. With our Western lifestyle, it's difficult to apply certain things. There is also a lot of misconceptions and errors of appreciation (we call it Kali Yuga, our era, the era of confusion). The image of yoga is a beautiful, flexible girl who makes positions in a dream landscape. And this is not within the reach of everyone. And it's not at all a pillar of yoga. Pillars like Yama and Niyama, philosophy and lifestyle and personal hygiene are often overlooked by an audience looking for fitness. Yoga is commercialized and loses its virtues, like industrial food. Our society is not sophisticated enough to accept certain restrictions or to follow moral principles. We are very confused between religion, spirituality and personal development.
What are the accepted ideas and clichés of yoga?
I have heard so many myths about yoga that it would be impossible to write them here. One of the most important "I'm not enough or I'm too ...."
Know that you are the guru, you are the master. Do not give responsibility to others. You are already a complete and perfect person. Your life is your Dharma, your mission, your work of art. Yoga is a tool to live it better.
What would you say to someone who wants to start yoga?
Find a teacher and a yoga practice that looks and feels good to you.
Deepened also in the culture of yoga, its texts, its traditions.
Practice yoga at home. Seek a moment of internalization each day. Get in touch with the sacred in you, with your "Higher Self". Pay close attention to your mental speech.
What would you say to someone who wants to become a yoga teacher?
"Yoga is not a profession but a way of life ..." here is a beautiful quote from Mahatma Ghandi.
Treat your words, they will become actions. Treat your actions because they will create your destiny. What you transmit is your essence.
Do you have tips and advice for a yoga teacher who starts?
Be yourself. Find a topic that interests you, deepen and specialize. There are lots of yoga teachers, but you have something unique. There is a lack of people who develop special techniques.
Do you have new projects in mind?
Yes I have so much!
At the moment I hesitate from the city to live in nature. I am a great nomad, and I would like to organize retreats and training everywhere ... but the human strength of my students, being surrounded by beautiful people in my Association "Ataraxia" and having found places how "Christmas Yoga Studio "in Aix-en-Provence as well as" The Academy of Hatha Yoga in Marseille "make me stay here. I would like to dedicate myself more to developing training and creating a community. I would like to create a yoga and movement center in Marseille. It is therefore a choice to make!
Finally I am training this year in Yoga "for trauma informed people". I work in the hospital with "Smile to Life", which offers yoga for children in oncology treatment and I would like to have more tools to accompany them.