I am absolutely humbled to be honored as teacher of the month. I don't think I would be able to teach yoga without the teachers, friends, Kula for Karma, family, and the students' willingness and touch of self-love. Adapting to an individual's needs and present conditions is one of the paramount points in how I teach, and how I continue to live my life. I was a fresh new certified teacher before I started volunteering at Care Plus last summer. I was looking for teaching experience especially in the realm of yoga therapy, and I was familiar with the challenges of the mental health population. It felt like a great opportunity for me to further develop my rhythm and voice as a teacher, and I am lucky to have grown and to have been challenged.
This population is challenged mentally, physically, and socially. They are subjected to unpleasant conditions that expand into many areas of their lives, but with these challenges I am absolutely amazed at their perseverance, optimism, and commitment to help themselves. Regardless of condition and its intensity, they are basically good like everyone else and they too deserve to be happy. Teaching there allowed me to spread my wings in adapting to current conditions and developing the flexibility and broadness in ways of delivering the qualities of yoga to students. I developed and combined a broad repertoire of approaches ranging from simple chair asana and pranayama, to Qi Gong, to loving/kindness and compassion meditations, to even having them instruct the poses, which gives a playful touch of social interaction to the class.
I continue to teach my yoga classes using elements that I cultivated from teaching at Care Plus. I could only hope that other teachers can see the goodness and innocence and humor in this population. Special thanks goes to the Care Plus staff who do great things. Their undying patience is absolutely inspiring.
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