Took Greg's class today and wanted to write a couple thoughts about it. Without going into detail about Greg's sutra regarding presence (which was very good!), he designed our practice to invoke both a mental and physical challenge in order to help us stay in the present, to focus.
Greg had us do a series of five-rep Sun Sal A's, with different standing balances or deep stretches with longer holds in between. It was a very simple, but very gratifying practice. We even did one five-rep Sun Sal A set with our eyes closed...a little experiment we played with in yoga teacher training that most definitely keeps you from being anywhere but in the present moment.
For sequence-challenged teachers like me, this was an eye-opening class (thank you, Greg!). I tend to take mostly advanced classes, and often, there's a lot of complicated sequencing going on, which is extremely intimidating for a new teacher (or a chicken like me who's been sticking to kids). This class brought us back to basics, and while it wasn't the sweatfest I'm usually up for (and always in need of), it did let me explore some deep hip openings, which I just love. So on one level, as a student, it was challenging in its own way, yet from the teaching perspective, it was simple, fluster-free content.
We also had a lot of silence in class, too, which I think added to the experience. Silence really heightens the challenge of sitting with sensation in deep hip-opening holds. I feel like it forces introspection as well, because you are even more aware of your wandering mind in silence, so as soon as that happens or you begin fighting the sensation, you can come back to your breath, and hopefully, sit a little longer.
Great class, Greg. I liked it very much!