I completed my RYT200 yoga Teacher Training yesterday. I’m a yoga teacher. The class is organized as 200 hours of work over eight weeks but I channeled my inner geek and logged a lot more than that. In addition to 96 hours of in-class time, 43 required classes, readings, and journal requirements, I tossed in another 26 classes and expanded my journal to include research and observations for potential articles. My 100+ pages looked more like a thesis than a diary. Like most theses, I’m banking no one will read it.
I didn’t learn as much content about history and anatomy as I would have liked, but that deficit was more than compensated by my unexpected insights into yoga philosophy and a solid foundation in how to structure a class. For years, yoga has been something I did every day. Now, it is something I live every day.
I also invented a new form of yoga. Giddy yoga. Not to be confused with Laughter Yoga or Giddy up, Giddy Yoga is the complement to serious yoga, precious yoga, or, in my case, just too darn much yoga.
I’ve experienced the emotional wallop some poses provide. I’ve gotten dizzy coming out of Eagle, nauseous coming out of Camel, and weepy in Half-Pigeon. It passes. But Giddy Yoga doesn’t pass. It builds. When you get to the point that your muscles are so confused by eccentric and concentric flexion, your Ujjayi breath hyperventilates from oceanic swell to dragon’s roar, and you hang onto a balance because it’s simply too much effort to fall, you’re on the precipice of Giddy Yoga. And once you start Giddy Yoga, you cannot stop.
I was on my tenth or eleventh class during Week Seven when I started laughing in Half Pigeon during a round robin practice. Unfortunately one of my fellow students decided to offer me an assist, a deep low back massage I usually enjoy. But my pelvis, stifling guffaws, bucked against her good intention like a bull.
Some days I held off until Happy Baby. It almost seemed appropriate to laugh during Happy Baby. But then I couldn’t stop. I tired to choke it down in Supine Twist; it’s near impossible to breath in that posture anyway. Unfortunately, next came Savasana. One afternoon Daryl Ann was guiding us to serenity in solemn reverence. What was I doing? Cracking up. Convulsing on my mat like I needed seizure meds. Kevin was next to me. He started laughing as well. My new form of yoga is contagious!
We concluded yesterday’s graduation ceremony with a yoga class, which, if you think about it, is like MIT graduates tossing their tassels into the air and then all sitting down to do another problem set. But, yoga’s not about such conscious thinking, so we were all excited to do more – yoga!
The class was lovely, beautiful really. Our mentor lead us through a wonderful sequence, our teachers gave us encouraging assists. It was ritual worthy of our achievement. Several times during class I felt my heart heave and I wondered whether it was a tear or a chortle, but I kept everything in check. Until final Savasana.
Cat, one of our teachers, whispered in my ear if I wanted a cold clothe on my head. No, I replied. I was in no rush to descend from 95 degrees and 60 % humidity. Cat moved on to another student but Christina airplaned into my blind side and plunked an icy mass on my forehead. What could I do? 98% of my body was a steamy mass of internal heat, while 2% was freeze-dried. Thermal confusion turned my brain numb. My defenses dropped. I got giddy. I laughed. And couldn’t stop. Wouldn’t you know Kevin was next to me? Which made me laugh. So he started to laugh. He squelched it. Which made me laugh even more. And, well, it just kept on like that until everyone wanted to put a bullet through my third eye center.
I’m not sure who will hire me to teach my form of yoga. Maybe I’ll jet have to open my own Giddy Yoga Studio. Call me at 1-800- Gid-Yoga to open your own franchise.