People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness set’s in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light from within. -Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
The 1st thing I usually hear from people when I say I teach yoga is, “I’m not very flexible.” It makes me wonder what pictures are being painted when I see a sexy woman doing some pose that has her twisted like a pretzel and wearing a super tight outfit. I saw a picture on Facebook advertising a get fit quick scheme and the woman in picture had a tight perfect butt, smooth sexy legs and not an ounce of fat. It hurts my heart and makes me question what messages we are putting out to the prospective student that does not or will not look like that because they don’t have the time, drive or desire to achieve this.
When I hear I’m not flexible to ever do yoga and I feel like it’s safe to infuse my personal opinion to someone this is what I say. It has changed my life in so many ways! Yes, stretching is apart of yoga, but flexibility is something that comes to each person in various degrees over time. For me my top 5 benefits would be: breathing, balance, endurance, stamina, flexibility.
1. Breathing – when we learn how to breath we can manage how we react and feel. I feel I was just surviving and taking unconscious breathes before yoga, but when I started taking conscious breathes I stared to really live. It gave me a sense of power when I connected the(dots) inhales and exhales and moved.
2. Balance – Not just balancing on one leg, but juggling our many responsibilities as moms, dads, careers, students etc….the heartbeats that guide us through our day when we find balance seem to eb and flow with more grace and ease.
3. Endurance – for me my practice is always difficult and that’s why I think I like it the way I do. As an athlete the difficulties of being pushed to do things that were dreadful was torture. As a yoga student I see the same person/face in the mirror, but because I’m never the same brings on a different set of challenges that allow me to let go and just be content in where I am.
4. Stamina – Showing up even when I don’t want to practice is a peace within itself! I’ve run 3 marathons and yes, 26 miles takes a longtime indeed and each mile, especially the last half, takes a lot of stamina and seems to get harder and more grueling each step you take. But within minutes after stepping onto my magic carpet(mat) I quickly forget about all the excuses as to why I should not practice and just want to continue work over and over.
5. Flexibility – Chances are that if you continue to practice you will become more flexible, but everyone reaches a level of flexibility in various degrees. What if someone asked me how long it would take them to touch their toes and I said to them 1 month and it didn’t happen? Would they be a failure? I believe it’s not the touching of the toes that matters, but the journey on the way to touching them. It may or may not happen, but what’s the hurry? There’s a lot to be learned on the way to touching your toes and that’s what should be important.
I love all the beauty and grace that I see in the poses that grace the covers of magazines, but is yoga all about the pose? Should your profile picture be all about this? What does this say about the face of yoga? Does it make you feel like you can conquer the world, or be a better person? And how does it lend itself to the way you treat others. We have the opportunity to truly make a difference one heartbeat at a time.
Remember today is Fast Friday
Join me today:
10/16 in Mission Viejo Yoga Works VInyasa Flow level 2/3 12-1:10
10/17 Mission Viejo Yoga Works Vinyasa Flow level 2 9:30-10:55
Retreat 2016 flyers will be available as soon as the final details are worked out.
The wisdom in me recognizes the wisdom in you….The spirit in me acknowledges the spirit in you….And the love in me embraces the love in you….
Until we meet again,