4/6: tiffany. being present and pratyahara

As bizzaire as it might sound, I realized that I could relate most of my YTT experiences to fighting. I realized that yoga and fighting both requires you to practice being present and pratyahara.

1. Being present

After my first try at teaching yoga, I realized the importance of being present even when I’m not doing the asanas with the class. If I’m not present, I might end up messing up the sequence, or I might end up skipping the left or right side of the sequence.

Similar to fighting, when you’re in a ring or cage, you have to be 100% focused and present. The consequences of not being present during a fight is definitely more damaging than not being present while teaching.

Interestingly, I find it easier to be present during a fight than being present on the mat. Being present on the mat during practice/teaching is something that requires quite a bit of effort for me and it’s something that I’m constantly working on.

2. Pratyahara (Withdrawal of senses)

While practicing yoga, you want to be focusing on yourself. You want to be focusing on your own breathing and not be affected by surroundings. Go r example, if youre attempting a challenging asana if you start comparing your progress to others; instead of focusing on yourself, you’ll find it difficult to get into the asana.

Like wise for fighting, when you step into a cage or ring, your teammates, friends and fans will be cheering for you. Your opponent’s supporter might even be booing you. And if you allow yourself to be affected by these external stimuli, you will not be able to keep your cool and stay calm during the fight.