I know I have done some scattered reporting out on how my time was in Costa Rica and how yoga and such was, but I figured it might be fun to give a bit more detailed breakdown of how the month actually went.
Firstly, I went into this training not knowing much more than the information offered on the webpage and from reviews I found online. I had researched a load to find a school somewhere warm, accredited by the Yoga Alliance, somewhere different (not Canada) and somewhere that would feel like an adventure. I ended up narrowing my choice down to three schools and then the Nosara Yoga Institute (NYI) won out because of when the class was offered.
I mean in retrospect maybe picking a school because it was “conveniently timed” wasn’t the greatest way to go but it really worked out well for me. I mean yes I knew I would be learning vinyasa style yoga and some restorative style yoga and that was attractive but really the selling point for me were the dates the program was offered. Once I arrived at the school I found out that a lot of people had been referred by their teachers or had heard of NYI from fellow yogis and I felt a little silly thinking “well November just worked best for me” but it was all apart of my adventure.
So school, school was crazy. I mean the course was called a 200 hour intensive and we all quickly found out it was called that for a reason. The school had posted an idea of what the schedule would be like online and although the actual program was fairly similar I don’t think I really understood what it would be like until I got there and started practicing. School was 7 days a week, with a bit more of a break on Sundays, but there was learning every day regardless.
There was a LOT of learning, a load of stretching, listening, practicing, teaching and it was all hands-on. The teachers were amazingly receptive to how exhausted each of us probably felt, and they were so supportive and encouraging of each and every yogis.
When I first signed up for NYI I figured that learning a powerful style of yoga and a more restorative style would be a great well rounded way of learning (and it was) but mostly I found it so necessary. With all of the movement and practice we were doing, I found that the restorative lessons and classes were a welcomed release, this is coming from someone that would normally pick a power class over a yin class any day. The balance between heart pumping challenging classes and lay on your mat and stretch it all out classes was perfect for learning and for the body, in my experience at least.
Beside the actual in class learning and moving there was our massive course pack, that book was so gigantic yet luckily there were many pictures and diagrams to help the reading go a bit quicker. The information provided in the book was always explored in class and was generally expanded on. I am happy to have my manual to take home and borrow ideas from while I start working on class programs of my own.
All in all I would say I am more than happy with the school and program I ended up choosing for my 200 hour yoga teacher training. The whole experience was eye opening, enlightening and probably most useful of all gave me so many tools on how to manage stress once I came back to my real life outside of the jungle. Although, I may have picked the school based on timing convenience I am so happy I went in with no major expectation other than “I am going to learn how to teach yoga” it gave me a chance to just experience everything instead of assessing everything and judging the experience based on expectations.
The program was excellent but the whole experience was also pretty fabulous. I feel it gave me the chance to not only deepen my practice but to get back in touch with myself, be silly and to feel the pride that comes with completing something that means so much to you. It also gave me the chance to meet so many amazing people and start to plan my next adventure to go and see my new friends.