What about Saucha or “Help! My Yoga Teacher Smells!”

by movelicious on July 19, 2012

Oh no, I was talked into eating a garlic bagel right before teaching a yoga class. No rigorous teeth brushing could repair the damage. There would be no adjustments today. Sorry.

But what do you do, if your teacher always emits a certain smell?

talk to the teacher. Nobody wants to know they smell but maybe your teacher does not know? Thus, if it is a consistent problem just have a private conversation with your teacher. Just be aware that s/he might get upset and you might lose a teacher in the process.

talk to the manager. I was told that this smelly “problem” was recently discussed on an early morning TV show in the USA. The recommendation was to talk to the manager. Oh, come on. It’s a low wage service job (sorry aspiring teachers) without any job protection. I would prefer, and I am very biased here, that you rather switch classes or talk to your teacher directly before someone loses their job………. OR they do not lose their job and suddenly your adjustments maybe kind of painful. That would not be good. (S-e-c-r-e-t. Any good Yoga TT includes training on the vulcan nerve pinch.)

find a  new teacher. There are different reasons for a flavorful teacher. Some people simply do not “believe” in taking showers. Thus, if your teacher looks like an adult version of Pig-Pen it’s simply time to find a new teacher.

it’s just garlic. I used to have a wonderful, committed teacher who loved eating raw garlic. That meant I knew I would be adjusted, while he was still 5 meters away. No big deal; it was just garlic and other than that he was a great guy. (This olfactory warning system also gave me ample of time to make any asana changes that needed to happen before he reached me!)

Yoga Class at a Gym Category:Gyms_and_Health_Clubs

The Yoga Sutras refer to the 5 niyamas (rules of conduct) for any yoga practitioner. One of those niyamasis is saucha (cleanliness). A practical application of saucha  would be the expectation of a yoga teacher coming clean to class. But it also refers to a sense of purity of action or where we chose to place your energies. Thus, of course, your yoga teacher should be clean when s/he teaches but also be conscious of what you will do about it. And remember we’re only human. I should not have had a garlic bagel before class. Still I think my yoga students survived and we had a good class.

Did you ever have a smelly yoga teacher? How did you deal with it?


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