I was a teen punk in 1990’s Washington, D.C. Even then, we felt like we were resuscitating the scene of the body formerly known as Punk. We were nostalgic for the punk of the 70’s and 80’s. Punk was already a Halloween costume, already a brand, already reified and commodified. I was sure I had missed out on the “real punk.”
What I didn’t know is that things would get worse (see also Hot Topic, Green Day, and Avril Lavigne). What we didn’t know is that we were also already making everything better. I didn’t know that we were starting a new punk revolution that would reverberate until forever. I didn’t know that Fugazi and Bikini Kill and all the bands that played at the Sanctuary for three bucks were not just the present but also the seeds that future punks would sow.
Sometimes I feel the same way about yoga. Sometimes I’m nostalgic for the yoga that came before Lululemon and Yoga Journal and live streaming botoxed bullshit. Sometimes I wish I had been around to learn from the “real teachers.” Sometimes I look at the proliferation of high priced studios and think, “Fuck this.”
But then I teach my classes, and when I see my students, I see the young punks of the 90’s, hungry for something unscripted. I see people who are tired of having their spirituality marketed and sold. I see people who want something real and just aren’t sure where to find it.
What I see is the potential for revolution.
I see that things are going to get worse, but that we are already making them better. I see a community of beautiful, engaged teachers, some of whom you may not have heard of because they don’t teach at major studios. I see studios that are trying to subvert the consumer capitalist paradigm. I see a community on the brink of enlightenment.
I started Get Bent Teacher Training because I want to nurture the growth of a yoga revolution. I don’t give a shit about making money. I don’t give a shit about fancy poses. I really especially don’t give a shit where you bought your yoga pants.
What I care about is community. I care about making this city a better place and about making people more able to live graceful lives. I’m a good teacher. Not because I can do crazy shit with my body, but because I spend all my time thinking about yoga and how it can change the world. I am looking for likeminded people to do this training with me. I am looking for students who want to be teachers but who will never ever stop being students. I am looking for revolutionaries.