Teachers’ Training Course Experiences
Last summer Acharya Harilalji of the Arsha Yoga Gurukulam in India led a 4-week Intensive English Yoga Teacher Training at Yoga Vidya in Bad Meinberg, Germany. We thought it might be interesting to find out how it felt to take part at that training and what kind of changes it brought to people’s lives. We asked Sarah, one of the participants, a few questions and got some inspiring answers.
Yoga Vidya: Hi Sarah! Thank you for taking the time to take part in this interview. As a participant in last summer’s intensive English Yoga Teachers’ Training, we are interested to know about your experiences. Could you begin by introducing yourself.
Sarah Fulton: Hi! My name is Sarah Fulton; I actually turned 27 whilst on the course. I’m originally from England, but moved to Berchtesgaden Bavaria four years ago to live with my partner.
YV: Thanks for introducing yourself. When did you start practicing yoga and how did you come into contact with it? Could you please tell us what yoga means to you?
SF: To me, Yoga is my savior. I stumbled upon the practice of asana whilst suffering from Anorexia Nervosa, and quickly found solace and comfort within it. I have always been spiritually attuned, and I found that yoga, as a whole, embodied many of my own beliefs. I first tried asana as a teenager but only began practising seriously during my mid-twenties.
YV: How did you hear about Yoga Vidya and the 4-week Intensive English Yoga Teacher Training? What motivated you to take part in it?
SF: I saw an advertisement for Yoga Vidya in a yoga magazine and requested a brochure, which included details of available courses. At first I contemplated taking part in the German course, but when I saw that an intensive English course was available, it was ideal. As a mother of a young son, I didn’t have the time to take on a longer course. I realized after being so unhappy at work that I should do something that I not only enjoy thoroughly, but through which I could also introduce others to the healing benefits of Yoga, being someone who had experienced those benefits first hand.
YV: What were your experiences of the practical classes? What about the theoretical talks?
SF: I loved every minute of every day. I loved the fact that we had two asana classes to break up the periods when we were sitting for the lectures, so we were not restless and figety and able to take in all of the information comfortably. I loved the lectures because Harilalji has a wonderful way of making things relatable, and it is clear that he really was passionate about Yoga. Radhika was so lovely and communicated wonderfully with us. She had time for each and every one of us, and I felt completely safe in her hands.
YV: What did you enjoy most about the training? Do you have certain favourite subjects or preferences?
SF: I loved the entire experience over the four weeks, so much so that I could not put a finger on one particular aspect. I met some wonderful people. I had a chance for a month to push aside the ´real world´ and live the way I believe we should, and I was able to spend the whole month doing what I love.
YV: Were your expectations of the training fulfilled? Would you recommend it to others?
SF: I would most definitely recommend the experience! I believe that investing in yourself and what you enjoy is one of the most important things a person can do. I have never felt healthier than I did throughout the month. The course as a whole completely exceeded my expectations. I often look back to my time at the Ashram fondly, and think about when I can return!
YV: What did you enjoy most about Yoga Vidya?
SF: I love the calm, friendly atmosphere at Yoga Vidya, the wonderful food, the opportunities and the resources. I think the shop is very practical and well-stocked. I made some lovely friends during my stay, as well as attaining a magnitude of useful, vital information about the practice of yoga and spirituality.
YV: What has changed in your life as a result of the training? Did your own yoga practice get more intense? Do you feel that the training has helped you to grow spiritually?