12 Years of Yoga: NETA Yoga

A quick thank you to Amanda for hosting a platform on which I can tell part of my story!

When I started teaching NETA Yoga it was a course written by Linda Christy Weiler. It was a different type of yoga exposure for me as some of the material was more “Mind” than the “Body” portion I’d originally been trained with and had previously worked with. During this time I kept practicing the way I always had and thought still little about the impact of the other parts of yoga.

I started teaching for a ballet studio early in the mornings and about two months after that first workshop I was pregnant with my second. I do believe that my yoga practice and the way I look at life since becoming a mom has helped me to get pregnant and to stay healthier than I ever have been. I eventually left the ballet studio after a few months and continued to teach online for ECU and travel for NETA through the end of my pregnancy. I remember going to a workshop when I was a few months pregnant and running off of the plane and into a bathroom to vomit. It didn’t help that there was a seafood restaurant right near the gate.

I was a little less cautious with the second baby and traveled by air, ate a little more seafood (but not more than recommended), ate at restaurants more, and didn’t nap constantly when I felt tired. I also walked almost every day with friends around the neighborhood and tried to stay as mobile as possible with my toddler in tow. I even did gymnastics with him (including trampoline) for awhile longer than most. I was lucky again to not really show much during my pregnancy until the end.

I used my yoga a lot this pregnancy in practicing how I wanted to deliver. I also used a lot of cow/cat at the direction of my midwife to turn the baby around because he was sunny side up. My delivery again didn’t go anything as planned and after my baby was here I was left without work to do.

The wonderful people at NETA that I work for were nice enough to let me do some curriculum work for them and as I did such a good job in that area, I got a new and even more exciting task to do with a newborn…..write a yoga manual. NETA wanted a revamp on the course that we had and they wanted it to be their own. So, starting in September of 2013, I started writing….and researching….and writing more. I was still mostly unemployed as I’d left ECU and only taken on a very limited part-time gig with a kid’s gym teaching kids yoga. So, my two boys and I spent our days as most stay at home moms do….playing, cleaning, and attempting to learn everything about yoga.

I remember having tons of books spread out across the floor and having my almost 3 year old looking at pictures and saying: “I can do that!” and then attempting to get into poses. I was learning so much more about the postures of yoga and all of their many benefits than I ever knew. This was the easy part of NETA Yoga…..the hard part came when I was asked to write other sections of the manual. Writing about teaching techniques too was easy, but about how to do meditation?

I had practiced what I now like to call “fake mediation” before. You know…when you sit quietly with your eyes closed and pretend to meditate, but really you just think about a million different things and try to figure out what you’re going to do after this meditation session. Yeah, even as an instructor I was still doing a lot of that! How about Affirmations? Well, I have a personal mantra, but I’d never instructed anyone else in how to write one.

Okay, now for the really hard part….tell us about the history of yoga, the 8 limb path of Raja yoga, and Sanskrit and Chakras and everything else that you have always brushed to the side and considered a different “type” of yoga….

It took 9 months of research, phone calls, reading books, emails, writing drafts, consulting, practicing, and edits to finish this project. During which time I started the blog, moved, and was hired on at CFCC.

Because I will keep getting better with age….chair pose when I’m older!

I feel like I never really LIVED my yoga until I took on this project and I haven’t stopped growing in yoga since. No one other moment in my yoga journey has impacted my practice as much as this project in such a profound way as to make me truly identify as a Yogini. It has improved the way I live, the way I work, and the way I teach and yet, I have continued to learn, research, and grow over the past two years since its completion. It’s probably the project I am most proud of completing.

What is the one project you are most proud of accomplishing?

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