We all have areas in our lives where we feel like we’ll never get it right. It feels like the effort to become more skillful there is so high so we just don’t.
Like cleaning up the backseat of our car that no matter how many times we tidy, remains the collecting grounds for messes from lands unknown.
Like that drawer that remains a disordered mess (possibly since the beginning of time.)
Like that reoccurring emotion that we cannot stand and desperately want to tuck away into the drawer mentioned above.
I used to feel this way about learning anatomy.
I can remember trying to learn about muscles, bones and the various systems of the body in my first yoga teacher training with Modo Yoga and feeling totally in over my head. I had just finished a Bachelor of Commerce undergrad; this was outside of my comfort zone. Where were the spreadsheets and power point presentations?! The RMTs, physio therapists and kinesiologists in my training cruised through this segment of the teacher training, of course. I felt intimidated. “Anatomy was a HUGE field of study and I’ll never know as much as them,” I thought.
It was then and there that I decided I just wasn’t going to be the kind of teacher who knew much about anatomy and that was fine by me.
Then, at the age of 27, I moved to Burnaby, BC and to work under studio directors Eric Mathias and Julia Cowan who were both university level athletes and Julia had a masters in physiotherapy. We could call them anatomy enthusiasts. I originally sought them out because I sensed their passion for practice and I wanted to be in an environment where that was encouraged. I did not anticipate their passion for functional anatomy or exercise science.
Shit! It was no longer an option to not learn about anatomy! I was so nervous about exploring this area of study as I had confidently set it aside years ago.
Thankfully, Eric and Julia taught their teachers slowly, regularly and with patience, starting with the basics.
They taught us about anatomy because Eric & Julia wanted us to be able to serve students the best we possibly could. Knowledge is empowering like that. I found that when I knew more, I could do better work and that felt inspiring; I was making a bigger impact than before.
Since then I’ve continued to learn from various experts and find that this knowledge brings efficacy and inspiration to teaching in ways that deliver clear results for my students: less pain, more strength, greater ease and more stability.
In my newest course, the Applied Functional Anatomy Course for Yoga Teachers and Curious Students, we focus on foundational knowledge and bring anatomy to life through its application to yoga postures. No starting at PowerPoints or pictures for hours trying to memorize names.
No, this is about a combination of knowledge and embodied application to bring the information to life. That means it’s easy to remember and apply to your own practice and your students’ bodies.
If you feel called to deepen your practice and/or serve your students with a fresh way of looking at yoga postures and movement, sign up for the course here.