I just got back from Wanderlust in Squaw Valley. This is a four-day Yoga and music festival and it was absolutely amazing. Well I must admit I can only say that the yoga part was amazing, after taking three classes a day I couldn’t really stay awake or stand long enough to partake in the evening music portion of the festival.
Having been in the fitness business for over 20 years and focusing on creating The Dailey Method for the last ten, it would be easy to think that I’ve seen and done it all. Yet I continue to be amazed with how much information there is out there, and by staying open to studying and practicing with other teachers of movement there is always room for improvement and evolution of an already amazing technique.
I’m not a yoga person, never have been and thought I never would be. I took seven classes in three days, all from masters of different styles of Yoga. I learned from and was inspired by all of them. I took two Anusara classes and was blown away. This style teaches an energy flow that correlates with the neutral spine education that The Dailey Method has been teaching, but from a more visceral point of view. They are incredibly symbiotic, and I am excited to further explore this symbiosis.
I took a wonderful class with Elena Brower who introduced the loops, or energy flow, to us and clearly imparted so much information in such a short time. I also took another class from Sianna Sherman. MC Yogi, a funky yogi DJ, said at the end of his class that the one thing he loves about Sianna is that when she talks you see rainbows shooting out of her heart. You honestly do. One of the things that I enjoyed the most was that so many of the instructors were so joyful, engaged and giving that they can’t help but inspire teachers to be to more present with their students. When our teaching comes from a place of genuine enthusiasm and caring, that is when we are at out best
Beyond amazing cues and interesting new takes on movements, I was also reminded that, as teachers, we need to make sure to encourage people to become stronger both inside and out. To strengthen themselves for themselves, but also so they can give that strength to others. Taking time for ourselves each day allows us to go out in the world and take better care of those who require our attention and need us to be our best. This is originally why I developed the Dailey Method, and every day that I take or teach class, I feel a difference in both the energy and confidence that I take out of the studio and into the world. It influences all the interactions that I have the rest of the day. It is cliché, but so true--if we feel good and are happy with ourselves, it’s much easier to make others happy.
I have always encouraged our Instructors to take as many different classes and teachers as possible. I have a good relationship with several similar Methods that allow our Instructors to take and learn from each other when traveling. Along the way I have had the benefit of many wonderful teachers, beginning with my early dance teachers, kinesiology professors, Pilates and Lotte Berk instructors, and of course my Dailey Method collegues. Never think you are at the end of your path. Always consider yourself on a stepping stone somewhere in the middle. This weekend was one of those stepping stones, and for that I am grateful.
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