After a lot of back and forth, I’m proud to say I’m finally going for my Yoga teaching certification. One weekend a month for ten months I will meet at Yama Yoga, a quaint gem of a studio, with a small group of eager minds to explore gravity-defying poses, anatomical prowess, and spiritual receptivity.
Then I will be unleashed into the world, ready to complete my new mission…Yoga’s for everyone.
No, really. It is.
I feel that Yoga is for everyone just as dance is for everyone, because we are humans, and humans were designed to move. Instead we spend the majority of our time sitting in front of a computer.
Hey, I’m guilty, too. Writing novels, manning social media fronts, and spearheading a blog make me a stationary perpetrator on the grandest scale.
More than ever it is important for us to move. Often scheduling that time in the form of a class is the only way we can commit. The beauty of a mat and bare feet? They’re portable.
The idea of Yoga may cause you to roll your eyes. I get it. I used to think the inner peace mumbo-jumbo was just a hoax myself.
I discovered Yoga about ten years ago when my mother encouraged me to take class with her in Forth Worth, Texas. Being in my early college years, there was some major eye-rolling on my part.
Despite my flexibility and agility, being a dancer actually worked against me in Yoga. No more turning out, only parallel. No more floor traveling, only stationary on a mat. It felt wrong.
And, meditation at the end of class? Talk about squirmy! My mind raced thinking about everything else but the now, and 5-10 minutes was about a century long.
Nonetheless, every time I left class I felt different. There was no denying it. Without bothering to be fully engaged, my mind, against my will, felt calm and clear.
A lifelong dancer and instructor, in recent years my body responded to dance like it was on cruise control. Movement began to lose its direction, circling around and around a cul-de-sac. In dance classes, I became antsy and wandering, just like when I was a college kid with a bad case of the Namaste wiggles.
Yet this time it was different…it was burnout.
So, I revisited Yoga. I have been consistently practicing, enjoying countless emotional and physical benefits along the way.
An impatient person, I have to work hard every day to overcome anxiety and stress. It doesn’t come easily for me. My high energy and drive are great for kicking ass, not great when it comes to sitting still. Yoga challenges me to face my weaknesses head on, cultivating them into strengths.
This is when I started thinking about sharing my unrequited love for Yoga with others. And a teacher was born.
My goals as a Yoga teacher will be the same as I have for dance: check the negativity at the door and leave inspired. Yoga is for everyone in my opinion: young or old, active or inactive, spiritual or skeptical.
Stress, whether instigated by external or internal elements, surrounds us one way or another. Yoga encourages us to search ourselves, something we don’t take the time to do when we’re rushing from point A to point B.
I strongly believe if we, as individuals, are happy and peaceful, the world will become the same way. Just as fear and negativity are powerful influences, so are hope and positivity.
If you haven’t tried Yoga, I hope you’ll reconsider. It’s nothing but good.