I never thought I would actually say this....I miss yoga in Santa Fe. There. Said it. Admitted it. It is preferable, ironically, to what I am encountering in Denver.
The best yoga scene/community that I have found is in Phoenix. Power driven, loud music (hip hop in most cases), hot (yes, super hot in addition to the 120+ degree days in the Valley of the Sun...they never back off the opportunity to increase the temperature in the room). They offer set sequence classes that although does not resonate with me, is incredibly popular. I would bounce around a few studios mostly stalking instructors that I found challenging. There are several of them there. And, they inspired me to become certified myself. I opted to get certified there since the style of asana resonated with me in Phoenix. I would have loved having the opportunity to attend more studios that offered vinyasa flow as opposed to the sequence. Ultimately, I miss the yoga in Phoenix.
Santa Fe has a yoga scene. I found it more spiritual driven with chanting and soft music. I struggled to not plateau or become uninspired with the experience I was encountering. I wanted to make it work and so I attended instructor's classes that I enjoyed. I forced myself to embrace chanting and tried to tune out the terrible music and instead focus on my breathing. There was an instructor that I enjoyed her flow until she began playing covers in her playlist. I considered bringing headphones in to tune out the shitty music but felt it would not be well received. Eventually, I found mysore classes that pushed me physically. As well as I discovered the best instructor in Santa Fe that really developed my practice. Paige is awesome. Her music I could overlook as she helped strengthen my practice and push my limits. I was sad to tell her I would be relocating to Denver since I would have loved to continue to practice with her. She is a badass!
I return to Denver thinking that since it is a city that the yoga will be similar to the experience I had in Phoenix. It's not. It's slow going, not spiritual or chanting driven like Santa Fe and definitely not heat inspired like Phoenix. The hot classes say they are 80+ degrees but it doesn't feel hot. I don't sweat or detox like I anticipate in attending classes in Phoenix. I am still searching for a studio to call home and I am sure that I will find it. I'm just frustrated that I am having to start over, again. I prefer power vinyasa classes. It did take me awhile to find this in Santa Fe as well as Phoenix. It's all a process. I have found a few instructors here that are great. Few and far between. I had an instructor tell me that it was not available for me to kick up into head stand from a forward fold. I was shocked and it immediately took me out of the present moment of the class. No longer was I focusing on the breathing. No, I was pissed. I wanted to kick up into headstand since I was bored with the sequence they offered. And, physically, it felt good. I have been dealing with a nagging right shoulder injury where I have backed off a lot of the arm balancing to not further aggravate my shoulder. I couldn't believe it. During my training, a fellow instructor described vinyasa flow as a wild animal. There would always be people who modified the poses or showed off. You couldn't control it as a teacher. I would agree and tried to exemplify that the other day but was stopped. Curious.
I will continue to check out studios and hope to find a home. I like the challenge of a vinyasa flow and know that I need structure from ashtanga. I benefit from both greatly.
Today, I have an upcoming yoga therapy class. I hope to address the shoulder injury and heal it. I am ready to move forward. That or find a chiropractor. That might be the end result. My stubbornness will only allow so much pain before I break. Enjoy your Monday!