When I stepped into my first yoga class about five years ago I didn't realize how much I would love it and how much it would benefit my running. I went to get a workout and because I needed something new. Most people think yoga is only for super-flexible people, but anyone can benefit from it. Yoga isn't just about doing yoga poses and stretching (although that's a great benefit) - making new friends, learning to focus on one task, and learning to stay steady are just a few things that I've gotten from practicing yoga. For the past few months, along with practicing my own yoga, I've been teaching once a week Piyo classes at a local studio, and REALLY love it. So when the opportunity to take a week long intensive training for Teaching Yoga to Athletes came to California I had to take it!
I arrived at the new facility near Santa Cruz, California on Sunday, June 18. It was located in a beautiful mountain setting in a newly developed center with rooms on-site to sleep and a dining hall with amazingly fresh, healthy food served at every meal. The first night we had a short hour-and-a-half session and then for about five hours each of the next five days we were there. Each day was part lecture and part of it practicing the yoga sequences. Some of the things we had to do were think about which poses would be beneficial to certain sports as well as actually putting a short sequence together and leading the group through it. We had a small group of us (which was very nice), and the instructor is one of the leading experts in Yoga for Athletes, has her own studio, as well as several books on the subject.
I was able to get out in the early mornings before we started for my runs and workouts, and even had the added benefit of many hills and a few trails around the area. The quiet, misty, cool mornings were my favorite way to start the day! I actually had hill repeats on my schedule this week, so it wasn't hard to find the perfect steep hill to get it done, and I went to the local high school track so I wouldn't have to try and get my second workout done on all the hills in the neighborhood. The rest of my mornings were spent either trail running or just exploring the neighborhood, which was beautiful!
The week went by quickly and before I knew it, it was time to pack up and leave! It was such a relaxing, yet, informative week and I came away with so many new ideas I want to try! Just a couple of my ideas that I hope to bring to action soon are:
- recording and making available a couple of short yoga videos for runners that could be done at home
- leading a 1-2 hour yoga workshop for endurance athletes to help with recovery from long workouts
Please feel free to comment or message me if you'd be interested in either of these!
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