Learning yoga in Spanish- An interview
I was lucky enough to live, train and teach yoga at Flying Tree Yoga Studio, Colombia.
Don't worry- I won't be teaching in Spanish in NZ- I have a LOT more to learn yet!
Here is an interview online if this is something you would like to know more about and get involved in! http://www.yogainternships.com/testamonials-and-stories
Andrew: Hi Kirsty and Jazmin - thank you so much for speaking with us about your experiences on the Internship Program! What have you particularly enjoyed about the course?
Kirsty: I loved how varied the course was and the way in which you adapted it to our needs and interests.
Jazmin: Yes, and the teaching experience has been really valuable. I was thinking about the expectations I had and the way that the internships program was marketed - I feel it very much meets expectations and excedes them. I feel like I’ve got everything I wanted out of it and more.
Kirsty: I also really loved the teaching experience - I had never really taught before in a studio, and I was very much aware that people were paying to be there in my classes. There was a certain level of expectation you want to meet, and it was nice to feel by the end of the course a sense of confidence that I can really do this!
Jazmin: I felt really well supported in the teaching practice and it was so nice to have people come back to the class regularly and to get to know them. Towards the end of the program one of the students came up and said “You’re leaving - I’m so sad!” and so it was nice to feel a part of something. It’s also a great space to practice and play - to see how a studio works, what kind of classes you want to teach and what suits you.
Kirsty: The community aspect was great - I remember one of the students passing me photos of us all in matching Medellín shirts in one of the local cafés! It was nice to be able to be friendly with and talk to people outside the studio and get involved with others in all the different activities going on around Medellín; it was not just about Yoga and teaching.
Jazmin: It was great to recognise people out and about in the city. We went for a dance in the Flower Festival and saw one of the girls from my class calling out to us from the stands. So yes, there was a real sense of community - that was in the first week!
Kirsty: I think it’s important to recognise that the community really gave us a chance - people were so supportive to us, turning up regularly and watching our little journey. You could tell they were getting more comfortable with us and asking more questions.
Andrew: That’s good to hear! And how did you find the Spanish language course?
Jazmin: I thought the language course was really well thought-out - people from all levels were getting something from it and so no matter where you were you would be learning something new. I think that if I were to want to tomorrow, I would be able to teach a class in Spanish.
Kirsty: I came in as a total beginner, and so the Spanish was a little overwhelming at times, but the teachers’ patience and explanations really helped. Even though I was a bit further behind in terms of pronunciation and understanding, I felt that you let me take my time and ask further questions and I felt really supported. I think that the notes that you gave us and that I took during the course were very solid and will allow me to continue practicing. I wanted to get my pronunciation down a little bit more - and not be scared to speak - and being able to guide a meditation in Spanish at the end of the course felt like a big achievement for me! Ive got all the foundations and now it’s up to me to keep practicing.
Andrew: How about the workshops, such as adjustments and assists?
Kirsty: I really enjoyed the workshops and how you tailored them to us - themes that we had not really gone into in our teacher trainings. Being able to understand each others’ bodies and how we are so physically different was really useful, and helped us learn how to give adjustments without risking injury.
Jazmin: The adjustments that you taught us were very valuable and we had a chance to and practice them both on each other and in the public Yoga classes. Having a senior teacher in class was useful because we could practice our assists and then receive feedback.
Kirsty: I really enjoyed the posture workshops and all the little drills we learned. Even just being able to be in the studio on our own during our free time and - I think “play” is a really great word to describe it - playing with ideas and ways of getting into postures and building our own strength was really cool. I’m definitely taking away lots from those sessions!
Andrew: How did you find Medellín and the surrounding countryside?
Kirsty: I really liked it and I enjoyed the opportunity to go out to some of the local villages on the weekend. The way you organise the schedule so we can choose when we want to teach was great. You can get some balance if you want it and get away from the city. I love how every suburb of Medellín is totally different- as if you are walking into a different country. I’ll miss the fruit man!
Jazmin: I think Medellín is an incredibly friendly city and that people here really make it - they are so accepting. It’s quite stunning as well - the mountains are beautiful. If you take the time to engage with the locals you’ll definitely get friendly vibes!
Andrew: Jazmin and Kirsty, than you very much!