My Evolution as a Yoga Teacher with Wendy Garafalo

Wendy Garafalo teaches classes at The Green Yogi and is leading two teacher trainings this fall for the Mukti Yoga School.  The first, co-taught with Linda Baffa, is an 150-Hour Foundation Training and begins this Friday Septemper 12th, 2014.  Meetings are two weekends per month ending in February 2015.  The second, co-taught with Chelsea Rothert, is a 50-hour Therapeutic Teacher Training and begins on Friday September 19th.  It meets one weekend per month thru Dec 2014.   For more info click here and read on to Be Inspired!team_wendyGarafalo_2-1From the first moment I stepped in front of a class, during my teacher training, I opened my mouth and the words that came out flowed from a deeper space.  They were very simple words, I was leading the class into Warrior Two.  But it was the energy behind what I was saying.  At the time I was working a full-time corporate job and had to speak in front of people all the time.  This moment was different.  I had become so passionate about the practice of yoga, loved the way it made my body move, loved the way I felt after savasana, I couldn’t wait to share it with everyone.  I was hooked and knew I had found my path.

Since my very first teacher training, I’ve evolved as we all do as a human and as a yoga teacher.  I began teaching in a way that served my soul at the time.  The movement was more like a dance, flowing seamlessly from one asana to another.  I was obsessed with finding and creating new sequences, creative movements that I hoped tapped people into their own inner grace and creativity.  I was taking as many classes as I could from different teachers, different styles and different trainings.  I was searching for my own unique way of teaching, something which served me, but also honored all the teachers whom I learned from.

Then, my world shifted.  I found out I was pregnant with my first baby, my little man Luca.  Because my body couldn’t move like it used to and because my energy was being reserved to grow a tiny human, I had to take a step back from teacher trainings and from taking classes 5-7 times each week.  I had to turn inward to find direction and to find inspiration for my teaching.  Up to that point, I was relying on others to fill my cup, to fill me with creativity and new ideas.

When I started to trust my instincts and started to really sequence a class in a way that made sense in the moment for those students and for their energetic state, I started teaching from my soul.  My classes began to focus more on alignment to ensure students were safe and to truly teach them how to feel the pose from the inside out.  I begin and end each class with a prayer to invoke a spiritual energy into the space, a higher being, and a purpose behind the movements.  It helps calm me and allows me to open myself up to that first energy I felt when I first taught.  I know the words and the movements come through me from a deeper space, from a connection we all have to a higher power.  In that connection, I lead my classes by reading energy and by trusting my intuition.  It has moved me into a place where I know exactly the type of teacher I am.  I understand my purpose, my intention when teaching is to heal.  My classes create a space for you to connect and for you to heal whatever ailments you face.  From sprained ankles to broken hearts to cancer, my hope is you come to my class to heal your mind body and spirit.

I love what I do and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to teach, to connect, and to grow.  I’m grateful for all my teachers who have influenced the way I teach and I’m grateful for the way my teaching has changed and evolved to serve my soul today.

May your lives be blessed.  May you find yoga when you need it most.  May your heart be open to all the different yoga methods, to all the different teachers and may you find the teacher that feeds your soul.  And finally may you trust that change happens, may you embrace the journey exactly as it exists, allow yourself to learn from your mistakes, to be present in your moments, and create more space for love.  Namaste.

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