5 Benefits of a Private Yoga Lesson
Looking out at a sea of bodies in a yoga studio is a interesting sight.
We are all so different. Our bodies capabilities, limitations, co-ordination and our interpretation of the teachers cues, come together to produce the shape we end up in when instructed to move into downward facing dog.
After purchasing a mat and yoga attire (i.e pants that aren't see through) your pretty much set to continue to practice yoga. It's virtually accessory free. If your in it for the long haul and are curious as to what else you can do to help your practice along, here's five ways investing in a private lesson can benefit you.
1. Tailor Made for You
A private lesson is a tailor made lesson for your body's idiosyncrasies. Yoga brings about a greater sense of body awareness as we start to notice our hamstrings are super tight but our shoulders are strangely mobile. Or that we love backbends because we can do them (perhaps due to those strangely mobile shoulders) but are not the biggest fan of arm balances (core, are you there?! I think my cores gone on vacation...)
These little bits of information are useful at letting us know what we need to spend our time on the most (hint: it's usually not what comes the easiest!). A private lesson assesses your body and creates a sequence of poses specifically designed for you. You can practice theses poses at home, with the teacher, or take them into your general classes at your favourite studio.
2. Alignment Matters
Theres a fine balance between overanalysing and ruminating on alignment and throwing all cues out the window to rock your own version of the sequence. Finding that happy place where you know the foundations of each pose and can breathe through the sequence at the same time takes practice.
Whether your a complete beginner looking for a base with which to step into your first general class, or you've gone to a few classes already, a private lesson can give you the confidence needed to begin, or to keep going. You'll also create safe alignment habits from the beginning of your yoga practice so you won't need to change the way you practice a pose too much down the line. Bonus.
General yoga classes are, well, general. If you are practicing with a injury, let the teacher know so they can provide you with suitable modifications. If your injury stops you from attending a yoga class, a private lesson is the bridge between no yoga and a modified practice to get you back into your classes.
Both acute and chronic injuries can benefit greatly from yoga. A private lesson with the right teacher for you can help you use yoga to recover from or manage an injury. Sometimes a series of one on one classes are needed, sometimes you need to go and practice a specific sequence until you heal and sometimes modifications are needed to take with you into your regular classes. Either way, don't let a injury stop you from practicing, get a private lesson to learn how to manage your injury with yoga.
4. Personal Goals
Becoming a yoga teacher. Supporting your body while training for a marathon. Wanting a way to calm down before bed time. Building strength. Deepening your practice. Needing a practice to take away with you when you travel. And the big kahuna, wanting to be more flexible. These are all specific goals and if you know where you want to go, a private lesson can help get you there faster.
Last but by no means least. We live a world where we can't aways make the sunrise class and there's no way we can cross town to get to the five-thirty lesson. Sometimes your schedule doesn't fit with any studio. Consider bringing the yoga to you at the time that suits (added bonus, you can request exactly what you'd like to practice!).