YTT: Yin and Traditional Tantra Hatha at The Practice Bali

If you’ve followed my Yoga Teacher Training Journey (see here, here and here), it’s been about a year since I did my 200hr course with Power Living in Bondi.

Since then I fell head over heels for the yoga at The Practice in Canggu, Bali. So when I found out about the 50hr Yin Teacher Training course they were holding, as well as the 50hr Traditional Tantra Hatha bridging course (for people who didn’t do their 200hr YTT with them, but want to learn the foundations of what they teach)…I knew I had to sign up. Here are my reviews of both:

50hr Yin Teacher Training with Nik Robson

Price: $850 USD

I’ve been to my fair share of yin classes with varying experiences, but when I started attending Nik’s yin classes last year I felt what I could only describe as pure magic. When I saw the training open up I knew I needed to find out what was behind it.

The training started with a half day, which included an opening ceremony and two hour practice. Our first full day was done in complete silence (definitely an experience). As the week went on (and we started speaking again hah) we learned about the pran vayus (different energies within the body), how to sequence a yin class to create specific experiences based on these energies and most importantly, how to create and hold a safe space for people to be free to create the *magic* for themselves.

We’d do yin practices that felt like an hour only to find out we’d stayed for three. Time didn’t exist and our little yin bubble was strong. We went deep and I felt like the course was lead the way Nik’s yin classes were lead: as a safe, strong, nurturing experience that gave us the space to really experience what we were learning and take it on board. There was a lot of trust put in us and the message was clear…it’s our duty to take these learnings, make them our own, and provide our own unique sacred spaces for people to experience yin.

50hr Traditional Tantra Hatha with Octavio Salvado

Price: $650 USD (a steal!)

If you’ve always wanted to take an extended spiritual pilgrimage to India, but haven’t found the time (hah), then this course is definitely for you. Not only is it insanely rich in content, but it also systematically shows you how to apply traditional tantra hatha yoga to your life…and how to reap the benefits.

This course was a whammy. So much information. So little time. We were given the same manual as the 200hr YTT course and I feel like we covered a lot of it. Each day was comprised of a two hour morning vinyasa krama, pranayama and meditation exercise followed by lectures with mini meditations and mantra chants in between. We were living and breathing the teachings being passed down to us. This is not the place to learn how to do your best downward dog (which you know if you’ve ever been to The Practice).

The majority of students were practicing yoga teachers (some even ran their own 200hr trainings) and a few yoga newbies. The yogis who had a fair share of trainings under their belt, all said they’d never found a course like this anywhere else in the world.

Here’s the course curriculum (direct from the site):

  • Tantric Philosophy, Cosmology and Methodology.
  • Moon, Sun and Fire: The 7 Stage Process to Awakening Kundalini.
  • Advanced Sequencing: The Energetics of Asana.
  • Mastering The Prana Vayus.
  • The Gunas and Their Connection to Emotions and Meditation.
  • Kundalini and The Chakras.
  • Understanding The Science and Connection Between Asana, Pranayama and Meditation.
  • The Science of Sound: Mantra, Vibration, Energy and Frequency.
  • Key Tantric Insights Into The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali.
  • Ayurveda and Tantra.
  • Yantra Yoga: The Mathematics of Dharma.
  • Kriya Meditation: The Ultimate Practice for Modern Yogis.

It was truly fascinating and the response I have to everyone who’s asked me about it is that I feel like I’ve learned all the secrets of the universe…and who doesn’t want to do that?!

It was amazing. Now go meditate!


200hr YTT pt.3: One year later

Wow. So it’s been one year since the Power Living Bali retreat (part of the 200hr YTT). Basically after that week it felt like everything was BY (before yoga) and AY (after yoga).

My yoga journey since the Power Living 200hr YTT:

  • I bought my yoga teacher insurance and completed my CPR and first aid course
  • I participated in the Power Living assisting program, a great way to get used to the flow of a yoga class as a teacher, rather than student
  • I went on a giant exploration of different styles of yoga, different teachers, different spaces (in Australia and Bali), trying to understand what was going on when something resonated deeply within me
  • I practised my Yamas and Niyamas daily and dove deep into Svadhyaya
  • I created my own yoga series called Yin + Din, where I lead a yin class for small private groups and then host a healthy dinner afterwards
  • I continued my teacher training – I’m currently in Canggu, Bali participating in two separate 50hr teacher trainings with The Practice (yin yoga and traditional hatha tantra, which starts next week…yippee!)

What I took away from the course (apart from yoga teaching qualifications):

  • A daily yoga practice – whether that’s getting on my mat, reading yoga books, journalling, saluting the sun, meditating by the ocean…I do something everyday to connect me back to the point of this thing called life
  • Some of the best friends of my life, soul sisters – and an amazing community of friends (three of whom lived on my street!) that made me feel like I had moved to a new neighbourhood in the best way
  • The ability to go into any yoga class and not feel like I have to be ‘good’. I don’t look around at what everyone else is doing. I’m able to be with myself on my mat, in my own little world and it’s da bomb
  • I fell in love with Bali – specifically Canggu. I’m writing this from the most gorgeous balcony overlooking rice fields here…my third time back in one year,
  • I found a clear pathway to live life that has given me so much peace, power and understanding (will post my yoga essays from the course soon and link here).
  • Certainty in who I am. What I’m doing. Why I’m doing it. Acceptance. I feel like I was given the permission I seemed to be searching for to stand strong in myself. No apologies for who I am. Can it get more liberating than that?!

Will I teach yoga in studio (apart from private sessions)?

I wasn’t sure if I wanted to teach yoga when I signed up for the 200hr YTT and when I finished the course I was so high off of the experience and the excitement of our final exams (teaching in the main room at Bondi’s Power Living studio was one of the most exhilarating highs), but when I thought about actually going into a studio and teaching people I didn’t know, I just didn’t feel ready yet. That’s no reflection on the teacher training though, lots of my friend’s have gone off to teach studio classes and are doing amazing jobs of it, but for me there was still a hesitation. I wasn’t sure if it was just nerves, but I decided to just keep doing what felt right and see where it took me. One of the biggest things I learned from the retreat was the power of surrendering and giving space to receive what comes next into your life – as someone who lived a previous life as an anxiety-riddled, Type A planner, this was a huge revelation (thank you Keenan Crisp!).

One year later, and one post 50hr Yin training with The Practice under my belt I can say now that I do feel the call to teach in studio. I love the style of yoga I’ve found at The Practice here in Bali and I’m trying to figure out a way to bring the essence of it back with me to Sydney. When I finish the 50hr Traditional Tantra Hatha training I will most likely do a writeup on my yoga learning experiences here too, so stay tuned!

The 200hr YTT series:

Part 1: How I chose my 200hr yoga teacher training course

Part 2: One week in Bali – the Power Living retreat

Part 3: One year later


200hr YTT pt.2: One week in Bali – the Power Living retreat

*This post is from 2017 and transferred from an old blog*

So I had the best of intentions to write about the Bali retreat that was part of our 200hr yoga teacher training with Power Living as soon as I finished, but I had no idea how big a week it would be and how long it would take to digest everything that happened.

I was going to write in detail about what to expect, how the days worked, etc., but now having done it I think it’s such a special experience that it’s better to leave an air of mystery around it (and if you really want there are a few blog posts about it if you Google).

Here’s what I can tell you:

  • The food was great and there was A LOT of it. They described it as ‘sattva’, which means pure and clean in Sanskrit, but for someone who eats quite healthily at home I actually felt like I was ‘letting go’ during the week. We had breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner and it was delicious. A few people from our group also bought meals regularly at the hotel beach bar, so you really can have whatever you want (but you pay extra for it, whereas the buffet food is all included).
  • The rooms were beautiful, although we didn’t spend much time in them. It was nice to come back after a long day to soft sheets, a rainfall shower and a little luxe.
  • Komune Resort in Keramas was wonderful. The staff were just superb, so, so helpful, nice and professional. The shala where we spent most of our time was gorgeous. The grounds were beautiful – flowers and lush plants everywhere, beautiful stone paths to the beach and bean bag chairs by the pool.
  • We had the pleasure of having Duncan Peak (the founder of Power Living) and Keenan Crisp (co-founder) leading our retreat so the tone and all the activities involved truly reflected the Power Living philosophy.
  • You will feel up and down pretty much every day, probably more than once, and so quickly between the two that you will confuse yourself. You’ll belly laugh, sob cry, dance like a maniac and feel so deeply connected to the people around you that you’ll surprise yourself.
  • You will come back with a lot to think about and a new perspective on pretty much everything. You won’t ever forget it!

My biggest piece of advice would be to come with a big open mind and heart – let yourself feel every emotion, even if it’s negative and know that it too shall pass. Embrace the process and see what comes up.

The 200hr YTT series:

Part 1: How I chose my 200hr yoga teacher training course

Part 2: One week in Bali – the Power Living retreat

Part 3: One year later


200hr YTT pt.1: How I chose my 200hr yoga teacher training course

*This post is from 2017 and transferred from an old blog*

So you want to yoga…

I’ve wanted to do my 200hr yoga teacher training for the last three years, but it wasn’t until I quit my job that I felt like I finally had the time (and mental capacity) to go for it 100%. There are so many options for yoga teacher training – in so many countries – that it can be overwhelming choosing which one is right for you. I decided to make a list of what I wanted from the experience and find the program that best fit.

What I wanted from my 200hr yoga teacher training:

  • Recognised accreditation
  • A reputable, well-known, popular school/studio, with a post-course community
  • Sydney-based yogi friends
  • Exotic locale
  • A dense, shorter time frame (as opposed to every weekend for a few months)
  • Personal development
  • Positive reviews
  • Value for money $
  • A good vibe!

With these factors in mind I spent a good afternoon going down a rabbit hole of yoga. I hemmed and hawed over the idea of doing my entire training in Bali, but decided it was really important for me to have training that was well-recognised in Australia, as well as a post-course support group if I wanted to do my 500hrs in the future. I also looked at schools in Byron Bay and Hawaii, but the costs of doing the course, paying for accomodation there, plus my rent in Bondi made it too expensive. In Sydney, there were only two studios who’s programs I seriously considered: BodyMindLife and Power Living.

Both had schedules that I could fit my life around, but Power Living stood out because not only was the training in Bondi (and five minutes from my apartment), but there was a one-week immersive retreat in Bali as part of the program*. And – serendipitously – there just happened to be a 200hr yoga teacher training info session at their Bondi Junction studio that next day.

So what I haven’t mentioned yet is that even though I’d been wanting to do a yoga teacher training course for a few years, I didn’t know if I wanted to be a yoga teacher per se. I loved going to yoga, but I would leave amazing classes feeling high, elated and searching for something more…like I’d only touched the tip of the iceberg. I wanted to know more and I wasn’t sure if that was enough to do a teacher training course – would I be the odd one out? The info session at Power Living helped dissipate every worry I had. Sol and Jordan were so chill, inspiring and very firm about how the course was a journey for anyone who loved yoga and that I didn’t have to be a flexible, hand-standing, perfectly lycra-ed being to partake. They also explained how the early bird discount worked in conjunction with the Power Living member’s discount…which meant the course, including the one-week Bali immersive retreat (!), would end up costing me less than any of the other courses I’d looked at. I signed up the next day without any hesitation, ready to yoga.

So how did Power Living stack up to my original list?

  • Recognised accreditation:
    • Yoga Alliance (USA) & Provisional Membership with the Yoga Teachers Association of Australia (YTAA)
  • A reputable, well-known, popular school/studio, with a post-course community:
    • 8 studios in AUS and one in NZ
    • An extensive, wide-ranging selection of advanced modules/retreats that go towards your 500hr credit
    • Power Living Teachers Network: a new program for graduate teachers to promote themselves, connect with each other and get discounts on upcoming workshops and retreats ($$)
  • Sydney-based yogi friends:
    • Most of the students in my group are from Sydney (others are from the Gold Coast, Canberra, Adelaide and even Philadelphia (!))
  • Exotic locale:
    • Hello Bali. One-week immersive retreat at Kommune Resort in Keramas. And even though Bondi itself might be considered an exotic locale to some…haha, it doesn’t hurt to be able to go for a swim at break 🙂
  • A dense, shorter time frame (as opposed to every weekend for a few months):
    • They have a few different types of courses to suit different schedules
  • Personal development:
    • Power Living is big on this, which was a huge attraction for me. We’re constantly questioning our assumptions about ourselves and trying to identify our self-imposed limitations. LOVE THIS.
  • Positive reviews:
  • Value for money $:
    • Great early bird and members discounts. These helped me sign up without hesitation, but even without those discounts it’s worth it and then some – an invaluable life experience (and I’m currently only halfway through).
  • A good vibe!:
    • The instructors are amazing, so knowledgable and so conscious of what different highs and lows everyone might be experiencing. They speak to this a lot and it really makes a huge difference.

Link: Power Living 200hr teacher training

* Two months later I just checked out the BodyMindLife site and they’ve added on a one-week Byron retreat to their program, which would be a GREAT value add. Byron Bay is AMAZING.

I’m currently in the middle of the course. I’ll definitely write about my experience at the retreat in Bali, as well as the entire 200hr yoga teacher training course as a whole once I’m done my exams in mid-July. Stay tuned x

The 200hr YTT series:

Part 1: How I chose my 200hr yoga teacher training course

Part 2: One week in Bali – the Power Living retreat

Part 3: One year later


tnfld

How to live a life Tnfld. A life that is true, real and bountiful… expansive as the sky above.

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