[quote=geekyMary;12179]I’ve taken classes at this shala before and always found them challenging. It was, I believe, Anusara style yoga. I usually practice something closer to Ashtanga - I like knowing the poses and the sequence. This was very free form and most of the poses I had never seen before.
As I’m writing this, I’m really seeing that this class was difficult and probably too difficult for me. I think what was disappointing for me was that I got so attached to success in that class. That I didn’t have the strength to just shrug my shoulders and do my own thing.
I’m always so sensitive to where I am in regards to other students in the class. If I’m further along, I’m always worried that I’m showing off, and feel guilty when I enjoy being just that much more flexibile. If I’m not as skilled as the rest of the class, I feel insecure.[/quote]
I think you’re answering your own Qs.
If, as you say, your awareness moves easily to what others are doing, then you’ve left yourself. Elvis has left the building.
Being within yourself means you’re not gonna know if you’re ‘showing off’ or being left behind until you hear verbal instruction regarding the next asana, or find yourself out of sync (if thats a big deal).
Then , as IA points out, ‘Flow’ or Vinyasa (as it currently seems to be practiced in many classes) may not suit either.
And Pandera points out the ‘leader/instructor’ issue. In their defense, given the expectations of the majority within any class, they need to address the heavy part of the bell curve, which may leave you doin your own thang.
I gotta say though, that I’m extremely lucky with teachers. Mine all seem to have a skill at keeping ‘new’ or struggling class members going at their own pace and feeling good about themselves and still leading great classes.
I personally have a difficult time in ‘Flow’ classes for a couple reasons. Relating to asanas, I don;t get as much benefit from them if I’m moving quickly from one to the next. As an overall practice, I try to focus on my breath, and honestly, I breath slowly. It seems much, much slower than many others in my classes, which means I move thru asanas at a much slower pace. Its important for me to be able to go inward and keeping with the breath helps me do that. I really don;t care if I’m outta sync, but prolly don;t go back to the quick flow classes cause swimming against the ‘flow’ is pretty useless.
I think there are many others, like myself who might be less than enamoured with many of the ‘flow’ classes being done.
Maybe you might be able to find a ‘slow flow’ or similar class. We’re lucky out here, since there are numerous studios and plenty of variety. There’s seems enough choices for me to find what works for me.
As for learning new poses. That’s usually only a problem the 1st couple times as you associate the ‘name’ with the intented asana. Familiarity comes quickly.
I know it seems easy enough for me to say, but there’s always child’s pose and downdog when the going gets beyond your comfort or pace and you need to catch up with yourself and center again. Or even tadasana is really great for getting composure, when you’ve lost your intent.
I use them alot and they help me get over any ‘ego’ tendencies. Then its easy to remember that my practice is all about me, not anyone else. As your’s should be about you.