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does my yoga teacher care if… [some yoga FAQs]

Posted Aug 01 2012 8:51pm

this is for the lolz but also to be informative. i have definitely wondered all of these things at some point. and now that i have the authority* to answer them, i will share my responses with you.

no! your teacher thinks it’s awesome that you are doing yoga whether it’s your first class or your 500th class. some teachers prefer teaching beginners the most because visible progress happens so quickly. others might like teaching yogis with more experience. but all yoga teachers love teaching yoga no matter what their students’ levels are.

try not to, for your own sake (you’re the one stuck on your mat), but no – she doesn’t. a fart is just the human body doing its thing! on this general topic, for your own comfort i think it’s a good idea to avoid heavy meals for a good 2-3 hours before class and to avoid eating much at all for the hour preceding class.

this is probably the most likely and simultaneously the (seemingly) most embarrassing time you could fart in class – but nope, she still doesn’t care. your body is moving and being moved around in class. yoga can stimulate digestion (especially twists) and it’s perfectly normal for the winds in your body to travel around.

no one is too old/young/fat/skinny/ugly/shy/tall/short/etc…, so NOPE! she thinks it’s marvelous that you are you and that you’re on your mat. my only precaution – if you have an injury that is healing, a past injury that still gives you trouble (or just makes you nervous), or you are pregnant, you should inform your teacher so she can give you appropriate modifications for the class.

she might not care (or she might), but the other students will care (you are distracting them) and the studio will certainly care (you are annoying its patrons). try to be on time or early. if you’re rushing to yoga you might not get all the benefits you can from the practice.

yes. you are disturbing your fellow students, your teacher, and yourself. please turn the phone off (or at least on silent) and leave it in the lobby of the studio, or, better yet, at home.

are you gross because your teacher made you work up a sweat? then NO, certainly not. she thinks you’re awesome and your sweat is awesome too. are you gross because you haven’t showered in a week? then… please go take a shower before you come to class. there are 10 basic ethical guidelines that yogis should follow (5 yamas — how you treat others; 5 niyamas — how you treat yourself). one of the niyamas (self care) is saucha, or cleanliness. keep your body in good condition.

first, your yoga teacher doesn’t judge you for any decisions you make. and second, your yoga teacher probably isn’t vegetarian herself. according to a yoga journal poll, only ~12 percent of yogis are vegetarian (compared with ~3% of the general population in the US). the reasoning behind vegetarianism for yogis is one of those guidelines i mentioned earlier (a yama called ahimsa, meaning non-violence). sometimes practicing ahimsa means being kind to yourself as well. so eat the diet that is right for you. if being vegetarian is not practicing kindness towards yourself, then don’t be a vegetarian! just try to be mindful of what you are putting in your mouth and in your body.

i hope this was helpful. i can definitely do more!

*i’m a certified 200-hour yoga instructor.

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