Yoga Teacher Training Complete in India!

Earning my yoga teacher certification at Shrimath Yoga of Arjunabittahalli, India was a fulfilling experience.  I thought it was fate and the power of Google that sent me on an adventure to improve my physique and yoga poses, and maybe calm me a bit too.  I quickly learned that there was a greater power sending me to a site that seemed to be designed just for me.  The 21 day teacher training piqued my attention with the allure of a forest on its property, an opportunity to connect to nature, daily gardening, visits to the village school, fresh fruit and chai tea breaks, and organic garden-fresh meals.  These perks were not separate from the yoga philosophy classes, but rather an application of yogic living.  Studying yoga in India was an authentic experience, as the whole country is a model of how to integrate yogic peaceful action and balance into daily living.

On day one I knew I was right where I needed to be when Krishna Prakash, Shrimath’s yoga philosophy teacher, gave us a tour of the property, highlighting the medicinal purposes and environmentally-friendly practices of over 100 trees on the beautiful grounds.

A banyan tree sends its branches to the ground and roots additional trunks on Shrimath Yoga's forest grounds
A banyan tree sends its branches to the ground and roots additional trunks on Shrimath Yoga’s forest grounds

Granite benches, harvested right from the village’s ground, are placed under trees and within the gardens for resting and meditating in nature.  Krishna has a profound and interesting delivery of yogic knowledge that he makes understandable for anyone, regardless of background and religion.  We connected personally over our shared sense of responsibility and action to care for the environment.

Our yoga postures (asanas) teacher, Hema, radiated an example of beauty in all of her actions and words.  She demonstrated a gentle patience in teaching us not only asanas and breathing, but also in encouraging living habits fit for good health and well-being. Hailing from an agricultural family, she even taught me some new gardening techniques. Hema connected asana sessions to appreciating the environment (especially with Surya Namaskaar), and ended sessions by saying, “bow to mother earth.”

My yoga instructor taught me more than postures - gardening in India too!  The pictured method  simulates rainfall.
My yoga instructor taught me more than postures – gardening in India too! The pictured method simulates rainfall.

Smithri took cooking to a new level.  She poured her spirit into every delicious meal.  Every single meal was made fresh from scratch with vegetables either directly from own her garden or from a neighbor’s yard.  She reinforced the yogic duty we all have to care for ourselves, by nourishing us with the bounty of the earth.  Forget processed junk food! Smithri proved how refreshed and strong we could feel as her cooking powered us through two daily classes of yoga postures.

Time at the village’s school was an application to reflect on what we each have to contribute to the world.  Of course I was thrilled to share my knowledge of the environment with the young learners.  This cultural exchange showed me that these kids already knew many yogic principles.  No need for step-by-step directions on calming a room of 20 kids, they already knew how to sit in a meditative pose, close their eyes and peacefully chant “ohm.”  We learned from each other.

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School children of the village greeted us daily with open arms and loved posing in pictures with us!

I am eternally blessed for my unforgettable experience of studying yoga at Shrimath Yoga.  It went above and beyond teaching yoga.  Krishna, Smithri, and Hema dedicated their entire being to 21 days of giving all they could to the 6 of us teachers-in-training.  In addition to the planned sessions, they even took us on outings to temples and the city to see first-hand how people in India apply yogic principles.  I connected with the environment- and the light within myself and others- through the natural world in my yoga teacher training.

Thank you, Krishna, Smithri, and Hema for an experience that will stick with me forever.  Namaste.

Krishna Prakash (yoga philosophy teacher), me, Hema Balan (yoga instructor)
Krishna Prakash (yoga philosophy teacher), me, Hema Balan (yoga instructor)

6 thoughts on “Yoga Teacher Training Complete in India!

  1. Bam

    Water Woman- I noticed that the monsoons have changed and the people in India aren’t able to track the monsoons for planting crops and trees and stuff. Also I wonder if they will ever be able to track the monsoons now that they cant.

    Everything was great though.

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  2. Maximus

    Start or edit my journal entry
    I noticed that they use a lot less water than we do in america. I wonder if we can get Americans to use less water like them.

    I noticed that water is really important and precious to these people and they use only what they need. I wonder if people get in trouble of they use to much water.

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  3. jacob

    Water women-I wonder how you get the job as water women.I noticed how much work it takes to do her job.

    Bathing in india-I noticed how You are only supposed to use the amount of water that is nessiary.I wonder if it is hard to take showers in india

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  4. AM

    Dear Laura,
    These are my comments for the Water Lady section you made.
    What is the limit for each home’s water usage?
    Why can’t they just pull the non-native eucalyptus trees out so the water can fill up like it should?

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  5. AM

    Dear Laura, This comment is for Bathing In India
    I would probably save water just like other places like India so we can be more efficient. I also noticed that the trees in the lake probably absorbed most of the water to survive themselves. That also might be why the water from the lake is decreasing in amount.

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