Yoga: How It Has Saved My Life and Ruined My Life
Some of you may be wondering how yoga could possibly ruin your life. Well, it can happen, and it often does, at least for me. My mom introduced me to yoga 12 years ago. She had been practicing a lot longer than that, but she had gone through a massive surgery and when she was mobile again she was able to get back into the studio. At the time there were not a lot of options for yoga. In Baltimore I knew of a few Bikram studios, but that sounded too scary to me. So I went to the Maryland Athletic Club where I met Karen Dubbs. Karen quickly became a role model of mine, and has created a great deal of success for herself in the yoga world, starting a company called Flexible Warrior, and teaching yoga to the Baltimore Ravens. I can say I had a pretty great introduction. I stuck with it here and there but did not make yoga an integral or daily routine. I went to college and when I came home my friend Erica dragged me to hot yoga. I was freaked out but obsessed the second class was over. So that's the end of my life right there. That was 5 years ago, and I have had a regulary (daily/weekly) yoga practice ever since. And 4 of those years I have been teaching.
I grew up as a competitive athlete and always suffered some chronic injuries, such as shin splints, stress fractures, tendotitis, etc. After I gave up rowing and rock climbing competitively I just focused on my yoga practice and I can honestly say I have never been happier with myself. As a person with a lot of Vata energy and overly sensitive personality, the calm, fluid movements of yoga met with meditation are exactly what I need. It has helped me shift in the most positive ways I could ask for. I have become less defensive, more open, and definitely more patient... however that will be a lifelong struggle. Patience is difficult.
But that is exactly why it has saved me and also "ruined" me. It has increased my sense of awareness so intensly that it is hard to do most things without thinking of it's effect on myself and others. I am constantly aware of what I need to work on and how I can grow, and there are times when I just don't feel like growing... but I have no choice... because of yoga. It has helped me weed out negative people in my life, although that has been difficult, it has helped me invite more compassionate and giving humans into my world, and helped me realize my strengths and also my weaknesses. I am so aware of my weaknesses now... that's been a tough pill to swallow.
I wouldn't say yoga is my whole life. Because nothing is my whole life. I have so many great loves, and for me yoga is an avenue, a tool, and mainly a direction to better myself. If you are interested in developing a daily or weekly practice in a loving, opening, compassionate community-oriented environment. I highly encourage you to come down the the Yoga Pod. I teach at the LoDo location, although there are many throughout Denver/Boulder. And you can see for yourself the overwhelming energy of that space. To find me you can check out my classes at these times:
Wednesday 6:30am PodHot
Wednesday 12:15pm PodHot
See you on your mat :)