It is the one-week countdown for Winter 2015-2016 Teacher Training (see Becca’s guide on what to bring) and I know I’m not the only one who has mixed feelings about it. Starting something new is always a little unnerving, even if it is a positive thing. Lately, life has been crazy and at times things have been packed so tight that it seems impossible to shove in one more responsibility. And yet starting next weekend, that’s exactly what is going to happen.
When I feel myself start to resist the process, I try and lean into that resistance. It makes me think about Frog Pose and how sometimes I just want to cry, or how I feel I can barely breathe but in a really weird way I kind of like it. It can still hurt, but taking it to that edge makes me better. I’ve learned these lessons already on my mat as a student. I think that through the training I’m going to start to see what it means to take that surrender off my mat.
For those who don’t know, Tina Guelda wrote all the incoming trainees a letter and she didn’t sugar coat anything. She suggests bringing Ibuprofen regularly because, “Your body and your brain will probably hurt at some point.” She concludes the letter by reminding us all that we are going to need support from family and friends even when we won’t be able to see them. When I first read Tina’s letter, I may have freaked out a little. What have I gotten myself into? But re-visiting it I realize that while it wasn’t coated with sugar, Tina instead dumped a whole lot of salty flavor all over the truth. And my mouth is watering just thinking about it.
What surprises me the most from all of this is how even though I’m a little nervous and I have definitely already held back a few melt-downs, I’m not doubting myself one bit. I’ve seen the support system 502PY has created already through its programs and when it comes down to it, I am not afraid. I have doubts about myself, my abilities, my schedule, my finances, and my mental will to carry on when things get tough, but I have zero doubt that when things get rough that I will have my support system to push me through it all.
As this new challenge sits in full Lotus Pose right on the strong, sturdy, and looming gate of Friday evening, I shudder to think of all the tears, frustrations, and emotional highs that wait for me right on the other side. But then I lean into the challenge, I read comments from my fellow trainees, and in a really weird way, I realize I’m going to like this.
Next week is the start of the 2015-1016 Teacher Training at 502PY and for those who have signed up, there are probably a lot of questions with what to bring. Though you will want to take the usual items for a power yoga class (see some pro-tips here) you will need to add some additional items to your list. Here is the very unofficial, not-all-inclusive, 502PY TT packing list. All of these things are items that I found to be personally useful, have used again in various workshop/program capacities, and would recommend.
1. Bag – Choose a bag big enough for all your stuff, but that can be squeezed into a lobby cubby. Mine has a zippered part for wet clothes, this was an awesome feature, but if your bag doesn’t have a separate zipper for sweaty clothes, bring some Kroger bags for your post-practice goods.
2. Lunch Bag/Cooler – Nothing huge, just something to keep your cold stuff from getting up to 90 degrees in the steamy studio.
3. Water Bottles – I had two bottles, one for water and one for Powerade. Personal preference here but make sure you always have water with you and something with electrolytes to replenish. Coconut water is another great option in addition to your usual water. #Protip: Hydroflasks keep water cold throughout the day (and they are sold in the studio!)
4. Yoga Clothes – I recommend two full sets of clothes for each full day.
5. Comfort Items – For me this was Glide, deodorant, contact solution, and chapstick. #Protip: Vaseline on the brow can help keep sweat from dripping into the eyes.
6. Liquid BandAid – Lots of yoga means dried feet and hands in the winter months. I had cracks/cuts on my toes and this is the only thing that stayed on during sweaty classes.
7. Baby Wipes – a.k.a “showers”
8. Towels – Mat and hand towels. I also used two mats during teacher training, so I could have one drying and one in use.
9. Pens/Pencils – Bring extra, they get lost and you will loan them out.
10. Hair Bands/Bobby Pins
11. Electrolytes – Personal preference here and there are lots of options, I like Honey Stinger Chews and Powerade.
12. Study Materials – Breaks are for eating, changing, and studying. BONUS: Here are my online Sanskrit flashcards, because I love you all!
13. Nail Kit
14. Selfie Stick (Optional) – Because it’s fun to act like goobers.
Not Pictured: Binder, journal, and books. A watch. Food and snacks (bring a variety – sweet and salty, granola bars, fruit, sandwiches, salads, chips and salsa or guac – whatever you will actually eat and will not make you want to throw up after a few leap frogs). Wallet – I just threw my wallet and phone in my bag.
Fellow TT Grads comment below with your must-have items!
Most importantly, know that all you need is to show up ready and willing! And that CVS is right across the parking lot and Jimmy John’s delivers.
[blockquote author=”Jim Valvano”]A person does not become whole until he or she becomes a part of something bigger than himself or herself. [/blockquote]
Ten years as a Volunteer Manager, along with spending time volunteering abroad and locally, has shown me how much volunteers are needed and appreciated. Volunteering is clearly beneficial for the organization in which you provide your time, but it is also beneficial for the person donating their time.
3 Benefits of Volunteering
Volunteerism and community involvement are an integral part to growth in a person. A great way to find a volunteering or personal development opportunity is to follow your passion. If you aren’t sure what you are passionate about when it comes to volunteerism seek out short term opportunities through various non-profits or use connection opportunities through United Way or VolunteerMatch.org. After the mentorship program with 502PY, my interest and involvement has grown even more.
The Community Grows
When you volunteer for a community, that community becomes stronger, more empowered, and healthier. The Independent Sector organization set a rate in 2012 for volunteers that their value is $22.14/hour for a typical volunteer. Not only are you saving an agency money, but you are having a large return on investment within your own life.
Ask any volunteer what they get out of volunteering and they most likely will say it’s the good feeling they get for helping others. Experiencing a service opportunity in South Africa stretched me personally very far out of my comfort zone by holding a baby in an orphanage, digging gardens, and organizing a school library. The largest emotional impact of that specific volunteer opportunity happened in a platinum mine in the city of Marikina. The city had seen great conflict and tragedy through violence. The homes where we visited were home to sometimes six adults and two children with only one room for all activities. The experience opened my heart so far that it has yet to fully comprehend that experience.
The author during her time volunteering in South Africa
No matter where you feel called to volunteer, whether it is through your church, the YMCA, a youth sports team, or periodic events, the give and take of volunteering is worth investing time in. If you have any interest in volunteering with 502 Power Yoga there are opportunities such as Energy Exchange, Assisting, and Karma classes that provide donations to non-profits in town, accessible yoga to those that may not be able to afford it otherwise, and community outreach throughout the city. Talk to someone that is in the Energy Exchange program or an Assistant to learn what they do and what they enjoy about that opportunity. It very well may be an opportunity you can pursue!