My Experience of Caroline Coggins’ Workshop at Hervey Bay School of Yoga, August 2015.
I’m standing in Tadasana and Caroline Coggins is talking to my right leg. “What are you doing there?’, she says. My leg seems to be listening, so the ‘me’ who’s observing sits back to see what unfolds. There’s a slight pause. A subtle adjustment occurs. A breath comes in and an energy expands through the body. The asana takes shape; not the shape that I was initially striving for, but a shape that has organically emerged. My chin tilts up, the chest opens, the senses soften, and the spine aligns. “Oh hello!” exclaims Caroline, before moving onto another student. I observe a sheepish grin creep onto my face. The leg seems to be pleased with itself. Or perhaps it’s my mind, as a realisation occurs that the workshop ahead is going to be an interesting ride.
There was something quite different about Caroline’s method of teaching. There’s a quality to it that can’t quite be expressed with words. It felt like the teaching was directed not so much at my conscious mind, but more at a deeper wisdom within the body. A teaching from the inside-out, or bottom-up, rather than top-down. Whatever it was, the effect it’s had on my practice since returning home has been quite profound.
Tim and I had such a lovely week visiting Hervey Bay. We would like to extend our deep gratitude to Caroline, her assistants, Polly, Vera, and the beautiful community of students at the school who made us feel so welcome.
We are very much looking forward to returning.
Practically speaking, when we are stiff in our hips and hamstrings our knees and ankles are ‘punished’. At some stage it is better to be accountable/aware of how to work with our hamstrings and hips so that the knees and ankles are able to get on with their work. It’s also the case in twisting poses that people twist into the flexible areas of their spine and in doing so completely miss the area that needs to be ‘accountable’: we are slipping around a stiffness and there will be consequences.
Our yoga classes for children have been running for 4 years and some of the feedback we get from parents and also teachers is amazing and encouraging. Children experience stress for lots of different reasons and yoga helps them to 'discharge' it through physical movements and also through breathing exercises and meditation.
When we go camping, we sit in awe of the magnificence of the mountain, the oceans, the sky. We go there because we recognize that some thing changes within us when we sit quietly within the wonderment of nature. We say "I am different", "I am happier", "I am energized", "I am more content". When we practice yoga we learn to sit in the wonderment of our embodiment. It is our microcosm of the macrocosm of nature. We recognize that being in the power of our own presence is a practice of being at one with the forces of nature.