• minhthutonnu

From lockdown to yoga instructor

Updated: Oct 1, 2021

April 2020, the moment the whole world came to a stop. In the month prior I had just re-connected with yoga by joining #aerial yoga classes in Da Nang. Now, locked up in my own home and looking for things to do, my thoughts turned back to yoga and without realising at the time my road to become a teacher had started.


Yoga during lockown


Via Youtube I came into contact with the Flight Master Yoga channel, where the instructor Lesley became my new inspiration. Everyday I spent 1 hour practicing #hatha yoga, much a the displeasure of my little boy who came knocking on my door regularly. Thanks to Lesley I was able to reconnect with all the different yoga poses I used to do so easily before or that I never dared to do earlier. Poses like the #mermaid, #headstand and many more. Up until this day I can still hear her say "Remember, yoga is not just about the poses and you don’t need to be perfect”. Unfortunately, she passed away during the pandemic and l was never ever be able to thank her and tell her how important she was for me.



Sofia


After two months in Belgium and with borders slowly re-opinging, we moved to Crete in June. By now, yoga had again become part of my daily life and I immediately started looking for a teacher. This is how I met Sofia in her studio “The first yoga studio in Chania” where she gave #aerial yoga lessons. Determined never to skip a class, I biked her studio in a blistering heat and over hilly roads. With temperatures only becoming higher during the summer months, I asked her if she was willing to do a private class at our local farm house. She agreed immediately


Three times a week, Sofia came to my house. Always arriving with a big smile and starting the lesson in a peaceful way. The flow she had prepared for me proved to be very challenging but I stuck with the same flow for four months. Every flow ended with new inversion poses that kept me wanting to do more.


Thanks to Sofia and all the inspiration she provided I slowly was able to complete the more advanced poses that were included in her flow. After 4 months I was comfortable with doing a #kingpigeon pose, #fullwheel pose, #hero pose, #headstand and many more. By the end of our stay in Crete, Sofia came over on a daily basis and she told me after every class that I was ready to be a yoga teacher myself. Becoming a yoga teacher..., a thought that up until then had never entered my mind.



In hindsight, Sofia's way of teaching made a lot of sense. She wanted me to be patient, be focused and really learn and perfect the #asana on my own. She has been, and continues to be inspiration for me up until now.


Self-study


When returning to Belgium and its cold winters, I continued practicing while getting inspiration from yoga books, in-depth videos explaining the different #asanas and so on. Sofia and I kept in contact and everytime she told me that I was ready to follow a training course. After spending another two months in Greece in early 2021 (unfortunataly, Sofia and me could not met due to travel restrictions), I finally made the decision to go for it


Teaching course


19 May 2021 was the moment I enrolled to online yoga instructor course via het 'Centrum voor avondonderwijs' in Belgium (see also: https://www.centrumvooravondonderwijs.be/). The following week my training course of 200 pages arrived. I had one year time to prepare for the theoretical and practical exams but I was determined to finish the course before the summer ended.


The next three months were fully dedicated to practising yoga myself, creating flows and teaching these floWs to my friends, husband and family in order to gain some teaching experience. These first teaching moments learned me that this is really what I wanted to do. In the evenings I would study the 200 page course which was in Dutch, my third language. Fortunately, the course instructor, Nancy, was very supportive and clear in her communication and she allowed me to do the exam in English.



In August, I was ready for my practical exam. I recorded a yoga session teaching #sunsalutation to my best students who lived right next door and uploaded it for the teacher to review. The next week I performed the theoretical exam.


Checking the school's website every day, eagerly awaiting the results, I finally got the news that I had passed succesfully and Nancy wrote some very nice words that filled my heart.


You did a fantastic job onboth your instructional video of the sun salutation and the written lesson. You really have teaching in you, your yoga class was built up beautifully, the postures flowed smoothly into each other, all elements were interwoven. Congratulations and good luck with your degree.

My 365 days to becoming a teacher were an amazing journey and I am so glad that I did it. The days waking up at 6 am or even 5 am, to do yoga before my little boy woke up, the days biking under a blistering sun to the yoga studia in Chania, they were all worth it. The past year has changed my body, my mind and my life.


Namaste,


Emmy




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