The answer is? Well that depends....
Willingness to learn is essential undoubtedly; but can the teacher understand their pupils struggles; and point of view? Equally vital; but harder to master.
Some things come more naturally to some of us. Other skills we've worked hard to achieve; but we can all too easily forget how hard it was to 'get it' at the beginning.
Ever been frustrated by trying to teach a child to tie their shoelaces? You only have to try doing it back to front.... left first; instead of right; to realise just how awkward it once was....I have a mental block around I.T.; my children are nearly always very patient with me... I very rarely have to remind them that once upon a time; I had to teach them how to use a spoon...
Even the brightest amongst us can take in, and fully retain, perhaps three things at once?
That's on a good day; with full attention able to be given; and a mind uncrowded by that endless 'to think about' list.
People will often leave a yoga class saying they feel far more relaxed... That's not because they've spent an hour and a half wafting about; gazing at candles; inhaling incense; and chanting...
Sorry if that disappoints; but we don't do any of that stuff..We work hard physically; always safely; always within our own capabilities; it's just most folks are capable of a lot more than they imagine...
I believe resulting relaxed mind is far more to do with having to be fully present to what we are physically doing right now; complete attention given to the precision demanded from this form of yoga..
It is almost impossible to think about any of lifes worries whilst you're balancing on one (hopefully very straight) leg; and then doing your best to get the rest of yourself properly aligned and extended, in relation to it.
Iyengar Yoga appeals not exclusively to the logically minded, systematic type, but there are a lot of scientists, educationalists, and dare I say it? Men; who take it up.
|Ardha Chandrasana.... Top arm should be vertical....|
Another oft encountered barrier is the "what we are used to doing" hurdle. The picture above shows Ardha Chandrasana.... Half moon pose...At first appearance considerably trickier than Trikonasana seen below; which is one of the very first postures we teach beginners.
But really the main difference is that in the above pose we're asked to stand on one foot and one hand: rather than our usual two feet. The shape; limb in relation to limb; is really not that different...
The adult brain puts up a bit of resistance at first. But if you can get your grown up 'brainy' brain to shut up for a bit; and let the mind experience; through a step by step methodical approach; what the body can do; it often in turn surprises the brain....And thus builds confidence for the next adventure.
|Trikonasana... Triangle posture..Strenghtens; lengthens; opens; and realigns...Puts your bones back where they should be...|
One of my favourite teaching moments, is getting middle aged girls; who claim they couldn't achieve it in the school yard; up into their first ever in their lives hand-stand.... Child-like whoops of joy often emanate....From them...(I try to keep mine on the inside)
Probably best I leave it there... If they cotton on to just how much enjoyment I get out of teaching 'em they might refuse to pay anymore...,,
But no; that's my ridiculous; quasi Calvanistic - 'work should only ever be hard' attitude that kicks in on occasion; something that I definitely need to unlearn.
This Sundays extra class had the winning combination of being informative and enjoyable for everyone; as well as lucrative for me; and that of course is O.K.