Greetings from It's Yoga Graduates!

What can I say?

I never planned on specifically doing "The Rocket®" training and certainly did not have Fuerteventura on my radar of places to visit in the near future. But it seems that life had a path laid out for me that I didn’t know about yet.

- Kim Hackenbuchner, It's Yoga Fuerteventura RYT 200 Hours and The Rocket® 301 & 302 Graduated, 2016

This is Kim's It's Yoga Story.

When I started looking for my second teacher training, the only requirements I had were that it needed to fit into my schedule had not much leeway at all. After being rejected from a few trainings because they did not want me to arrive 1 day later, I miraculously stumbled across a 200 hour training with It’s Yoga in Fuerteventura that was Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga based and had "The Rocket®" classes. My first thought was: “Oh, great! I have tried some Rocket and know that it was quite dynamic, so combining that with Ashtanga will be awesome, and oh, look! Fuerteventura is

not even that far away!”

I had little to no idea about "The Rocket®" and even less about It’s Yoga. I sent Salla an email straightaway and asked if it would be possible for me to join the training if I came a day later. I got a quick reply and Salla was super nice, told me not to worry and that we would sort it all out. The next day, I paid my deposit. Little did I know that I had just booked a ticket to a life-changing experience.

"Why am I saying that?

Because it was the best decision of my life so far.

And I’m not just casually saying this.

No, I actually mean, from the bottom of my heart, that, without even knowing it yet,

by signing up to that first 200 hours training with It’s Yoga Fuerteventura,

I made a spontaneous, important and the best decision in My Life until Now."

- Kim, It's Yoga Graduated 2016

A few months later, I boarded my plane to Fuerteventura, not quite knowing to expect. As I was arriving late, Salla had an written assignment about the training for me. I was curious, excited and nervous, as I sat there, trying to figure what to write. I had no idea where we were going with the process and was not entirely sure that I understood what it was all about. Who would have thought that soon I would know this 8 Keys tool from CENTER OF EXCELLENCE off by heart and doing not one, or two, but three of them over the next few months?

Half a day later, I got off the plane and took a shuttle bus that would bring me to Corralejo. “I like the name”, I thought to myself, “it sounds cool”. So, there I sat, headphones plugged in, music coming from my phone, and the stuffy smell of what seemed like a Third World bus filling my nose. And I loved it all. I intensely stared out of the window, watching the scenery zip by. I remember being mesmerised by the vast dunes, the grey, stony volcano landscape on one side and the endless beaches and ocean on the other side that accompanied us all the way to Corralejo.

Salla invited me to join them for the afternoon session. So, I only dropped off my bag and made my way to find this infamous It’s Yoga studio in the streets of Corralejo. The small group of trainees was already in session and everything kind of stopped as I walked in. We briefly greeted each other and then Salla asked us to come to the circle and sit in and just be for a moment. “Okay, I’m not quite sure what’s happening,” I thought, “but this is a yoga training. What did you expect, Kim? Let’s just go with it!”

We had an awesome group of four for the 200 hour training. It was intimate, comfortable and loving. We spent our days doing Modified Primary Series in the morning and joining The Rocket classes at night. We journaled, and discussed, and read – about It’s Yoga, about Ashtanga Yoga and Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, about Larry, about Chakras.We had sessions on the beach. We learned to bring clarity, on and off the mat . We were each other’s guinea pigs when practicing teaching the MPS sequence. We cried with laughter when trying to learn Patanjali’s Invocation mantra. There was lots of that; laughter. And there were tears. Lots of them, too. Each one of us there went through an emotional rollercoaster in the four weeks but we knew we had each other there. We supported each other. We held a space. And despite the emotional intensity, the day-long theory sessions, and the many, many hours spent practicing, those four weeks flew by like you would not believe. I don’t know if time has ever passed that quickly before.

Beach session

What was the most important point for me in the training? It was the first Friday. It was my first The Rocket® 3 class. So, the 200 hour training was to end on September 2 nd and I was meant to be back to start Uni on September 5 th . Well… That did not happen.

I had been doing yoga almost daily for 3 years by the time I took the training. I had gone to numerous workshops all over the place with international teachers from near and far. I’d practiced yoga in at least 5 different countries. I have never, ever had an experience like I did that day in Rocket 3.

If I hadn’t already, I fell in love with "The Rocket®" that moment.

"I was flying, I was flowing, I was moving non-stop. I was standing on my feet, on my hands, bending forward, back and sideways. I was breathing, breathing, breathing. And I was sweating. And I mean sweating! If you have ever taken a Rocket 3 class, you might be able to relate to this. For 90 minutes non-stop, I was just going, going, going. The craziest thing? Instead of being completely knackered by the end of it, I could have done it all over again. So, I lay there in savasana, buzzing from head to toe, having no idea what on Earth was going on. And that’s when I knew. I made a decision right then and there to stay for the Rocket 301 training that started straight after. Who cares if I miss 2 weeks of Uni? I just knew I could not say ‘no’ to that opportunity."

Trust me, I’ve done all sorts of yoga classes and styles, and so many times had I been convinced that I loved Vinyasa, I loved Jivamukti, loved the flow. I wanted to know more about the traditional styles, about Ashtanga Yoga, definitely. But I was so convinced that Vinyasa yoga would always be my love, my baby. Until The Rocket® came along… So, I stayed for the 301 The Rocket® Foundations training and it was even more fun than the 200 hours.

Jari came along from It’s Yoga Helsinki and we had a super cool, cosy, little group. Admittedly, it took some time to get used switching from doing mainly MPS to doing The Rocket® 1 sequence. It was a little intimidating, at first, but it soon became second nature. We learned the sequence, we went through the poses, we did our second 8 Keys process, we journaled some more, and we talked even more. Teaching The Rocket® 1 for the first time was nerve-wrecking but it was so much fun. I still remember supporting Anna in coming up to handstand and I think it was an amazing experience for both us – for her to be comfortable enough to come up and for me to know she trusted me. It was absolutely amazing.

I left Corralejo so, so heavy-hearted. Riding back to the airport on that shuttle bus, my eyes were teary. I could not believe how time had just flown by. I could not believe that I was saying goodbye to that little yoga-cave on Calle Isaac Peral. I could not believe that I had to say farewell to these awesome new souls I met. In Corralejo, with It’s Yoga, and with the people around me, I had found my Happy Place. And even 6 weeks were not enough. But I had to go back to reality. So, I got on that bus and drove off. I knew I would be back some day but that did not make leaving any easier.I got back home and it took me a while to adjust. The first few Rocket self-practices were still a little hesitant. It was weird to practice "The Rocket®" by myself. But very soon I adjusted, and because The Rocket® 1 was the only Rocket I knew at that point, I practiced the sequence like 6 days a week. I came to love it more and more with every day. I started to really look forward to my morning practices – and having to get up at 6am to do so, that really means something!

Of course, there was the 302 The Rocket® Take Off happening in November and my friend was already planning on going back but because I missed 2 weeks already, I was not getting my hopes up for going, too. But I just could not stay away. Every day after returning home, I was thinking about how to make it possible to go back. So, the last day of the Early Bird, I booked the 302 training and planned my next trip back to Fuerteventura. That I would miss another two weeks of Uni… Well, you have to set priorities, right?

Going back to Corralejo the second time was even better because I knew what lay ahead of me and I knew it would be awesome. And the trainings just kept getting better. Jari came back from Helsinki to join and support us, and we had the coolest, craziest, funniest, happiest group together for this training.

We spoke about anatomy. We shared insights from our journals. Jari made us draw endless stick figures, so we could fill them in with the myofascial meridians. We balanced on our hands. We flew through the funkiest transitions. (And yes, sometimes we landed on our faces.) We learned The Rocket® 2 sequence. And then, The Rocket® 3. And then there were, of course, our much beloved Yin days. We created sequences. We made bolsters out of pillows. We sneaked down to the ice-cream place before class. We cried even more and we laughed even harder. Our beach picnic turned into a burger dinner at Single Fin. It’s all about balance, right? Salla calls it Rocket fuel and she just got it totally right. We had our awesome 302 group together and I cherished every single moment.

Out of all the trainings, the 302 training has been my favourite one. And that is just my personal experience. But going back there to Corralejo, walking back down the stairs to IYFV cave, and sitting back down in that circle for just be, it was like coming home. I made a decision to take that first 200 hour training without knowing what lay ahead of me. And there I was, three months later, feeling utterly at peace in the same place that was new and unfamiliar at first, coming home to a place I had never even been three months before.

Since then, my self-practice has been "The Rocket®" #everydamnday. I have had the opportunity to share both The Rocket® 1 and The Rocket® 2 sequence at the studio back home. I am going back to IYFV in January and already I am counting the days to be there, with that unique community, again. I am planning on doing my next internship with IYFV, as well. But whatever comes, I cannot be grateful enough for this journey. I cannot put into words what it has meant to me. My life has changed 180 degrees. I have changed. And if I could go back, there is not one thing that I would do differently. It may sound far-fetched. It may sound cliché. But making that decision and taking that first 200 hour training has been the best decision of my life so far.

I have had the greatest luck to do what I have done. To come across The Rocket®. To come across It’s Yoga. To come across all those souls that I met because of it. I am eternally grateful. And even now, 1000 miles away from my Happy Place, I step on my mat every morning, and I know I am practicing "The Rocket®" with all those souls there with me.

My Rocket Practice is my home-coming every day.

Thank you Kim for sharing this with us, that is a one great IT'S YOGA STORY!

Find Kim's "The Rocket®" classes in Mallorca, Spain

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- Love & Light Within, NAMASTÉ each & everyone