Sometimes all you may want to do when you arrive to class is put down your yoga mat and just go on autopilot. And then the yoga teacher stays on your case throughout the whole class.
“Jane, right hip forward!” (Standing Head to Knee)
“Jane, upper body back!” (Eagle)
“Jane,, straighten your leg!” (Loctus pose)
So what do you say to the yoga teacher who you feel always “picks” on you in class? You say nothing, and here’s why.
Your Yoga Teachers corrections will make your postures better.
Believe it or not the teacher means well. They want your postures to be aligned and for you to get the most out of them, by truly connecting to the details of the posture. Rather than getting worked up about having your name called out in class, think of it as a compliment. Rather than resisting the instruction, try unemotionally responding to your teacher’s feedback and correcting the posture as best you can. Rise to the challenge, and do your best to receive feedback openly.
It’s not personal.
Even if the corrections feel personal, they aren’t. The teacher’s job is to respond to what they are seeing in the yoga room. You may be one of the few names the teacher actually knows in class. Lucky you, you’re memorable! If it feels deeply personal, there may be something else going on that is unrelated to the teacher. Whether or not you want to explore what that “something else” may be is up to you.
Use moments of annoyance as a tool to “get out of your head”.
When you start going down the mental spiral of being annoyed by your yoga teacher, it’s easy to spend the whole 90 minutes in that mind set. If the teacher calls on you a lot (or if it feels like they are calling you out) let the thought pass through your mind. Don’t let it steal your peace. One of the most powerful gifts you can give yourself through a consistent yoga practice is the ability to let things roll off your back. Other people won’t be able to rile you up like they have in the past. This means less stress, less toxic cortisol in your body (stress hormone), a happier demeanor, and the freedom not to let other people waste your mental and physical energy.
Corrections prevent injuries.
No matter what type of movement you are doing, there is a risk of injury. If properly executed, Bikram yoga is completely safe. Since there is so much to take in during the class – especially during your first few years of practicing – teacher’s corrections are to protect you from hurting yourself. Even if it may feel like you should do the posture your own way, remember that the teachers are instructing us the way to do the postures, which have been passed down for over 5,000 years. Think about that for a minute, the hatha yoga postures in Bikram’s yoga series have been around and perfected for thousands of years. There is a lot of time and wisdom that has gone into making the execution and precision of these postures, the only way is the right way.
You may miss the day when teachers called on you.
We all need to be pushed from time to time. It’s a added boost to gain tweaks to improve your practice.
After final savasana, you won’t care anymore.
If during the whole 90-minute class, something was bothering you, by the end of final savasana you won’t care anymore? That is the power of yoga and the power of learning to let go.
So back to the question at hand, what do you say to the yoga teacher who picks on you in class?
Written by Lindsay Dahl