Eventually after teaching for a few years, I decided to pursue Iyengar Yoga certification more seriously. The studio owner decided she wanted to change the name of her studio and wanted to use the Iyengar name. In order to do that all teachers must be certified and no other styles of yoga can be taught, so the vinyasa, bhakti and pilates classes were invited to leave. I can’t say I have ever enjoyed a yoga teacher training and I have done many, but I can say unequivocally that Manouso Manos showed the most patience and compassion in teacher training. Yoga is an art, and the artisty really can’t really be taught. Sure, you can spit out the instructions in a methodical and robotic way, as was pushed in Iyengar yoga teacher trainings, but I think teachers should inspire. I found tremendous inconsistencies from one teacher training to the next and usually it was all about semantics. One teacher might insist that I say press your feet into the floor in tadasana while another teacher would tell me that that instruction was non-sensical. Often I left Iyengar yoga teacher trainings feeling confused, uninspired and unsure of myself.
It’s a strange dichotomy to practice and teach yoga while simultaneously over analyzing ever word and action. You can’t be free and rigid at the same time.
Manouso always says, “You can’t change and stay the same at the same time.” I think he might have been keenly aware of some of the paradoxes between the art of yoga and the business of yoga.