18 May Justine Hamill on the process of un-conditioning in Yoga Teacher Training
by Lucinda Staniland of The Yoga Lunchbox
Meet the delightful Justine Hamill, co-owner of Wellington’s Power Living yoga studio and a Senior Facilitator of the Power Living New Zealand team.
With eighteen years of Yoga practice under her belt, as well as training in Gestalt Psychotherapy, watching Justine in action makes it obvious that she brings a very deep level of experience and nurturing care to Power Living’s Yoga Teacher Trainings, which she’s been involved with for the last four years.
Yoga Teacher Trainings can be a strange beast. They’ve become intensely popular in recent years, and as Justine mentions in this video interview with Kara-Leah Grant, it’s now common for students to sign up for Yoga Teacher Trainings with absolutely no intention of becoming yoga teachers.
Q: Why are Yoga Teacher Trainings so popular then? And why would someone bother immersing themselves in a yoga training if they didn’t actually want to teach?
A: This is a stepping stone and an opening out into awareness. It’s the first step… You don’t have to do the training so that you can teach yoga classes. You can do the training to discover what your purpose is, what your gifts are and how you can translate that to serve your community.
With her embodied experience of the yoga in its deepest and fullest sense, Justine is the perfect person to lead students through this journey of personal growth and development, which she refers to as “a transformational journey beyond anything else that I’ve experienced” and “really an un-training, an un-conditioning process.”
And perhaps that’s the most important gift a Yoga Teacher Training can offer their students. Beyond the detailed anatomy and technical skills (which the Power Living training certainly delivers on, with world-class teaching in anatomy, functional anatomy and traditional yogic philosophy), what many yoga students really crave is an inner knowing—a connection to their authentic self—and to be able to share that with the world, which may or may not involve teaching yoga asana.
Justine Hamill on The Process of Unconditioning in Yoga Teacher Training
On personal growth and development in Yoga Teacher Training:
Over the last 8 years, the training has refined and grown and become a transformational journey beyond anything else that I’ve experienced.
To me, the biggest part of the training is the personal growth and development. It’s not really about signing up to become a teacher, in fact, half of the people who sign up do so for their own personal growth. It’s the deeper journey of yoga.”
It’s a process we hold carefully and take really seriously and we give a lot of care, compassion and love throughout that process.
You don’t have to do the training so that you can teach yoga classes. You can do the training to discover what your purpose is and what your gifts are and how you can translate that into your community.”
On the transformations she has seen in students:
The change in everyone is so profound that I’m always blown away.
It’s really an untraining, an unconditioning process… It has to happen to get to the core of who we really are. When we find that we can become more in line with our purpose, our dharma, and we know what we’ve got to share with others.
On what makes a great yoga teacher:
It’s in the way we’re being everywhere, all the time. How we’re being in the classroom is the biggest way we can impact our students, beyond what we’re telling them to do, beyond what cues we’re giving… It’s about how we’re being and what energy we’re bringing to the room.
For more information on Teacher Training in New Zealand, click here.
Article by: The Yoga Lunchbox