Yoga, it’s everywhere you look in today’s world. It’s at the park you visited last weekend, in the boardroom during lunchtime, at your child’s school, at most vacation resorts, in nursing homes, even prisons, wherever you go…. it’s there! With such a far reach, one would have to wonder, what is so great about yoga that it’s popping up everywhere? What’s the catch? What’s this new trend?
For starters, it’s not new, yoga has been around for thousands of years. The “catch” is, there is no catch; it’s as much or as little as you need in any given moment, yoga is ALWAYS about your needs in that precise moment. What? There’s a socially acceptable way to make something, anything, all about me? Yes, we all deserve a snippet of time where we feel that our needs, our abilities and feelings truly matter. On the mat, that is exactly what you will find. Not only do they matter, these things are the very premise of your practice, and they are not only allowed to change from moment to moment; that is anticipated and appreciated.
In the course of our daily lives, many of us find ourselves “lost” to our responsibilities, the daily demands that seemingly drain us of our true selves, on life’s treadmill that simply cycles through the same place day in and day out, leaving us craving that greener grass over yonder. It doesn’t have to be that way. Yes, I said it, and I believe it to be true. I have seen proof that this does not have to be. Most yoga students begin the practice seeking the physical benefits which makes sense; increased flexibility, better balance, increased physical strength and toned muscles all sound awesome, and they are! Those things all manifest within the body; you notice, your family and friends notice, and you feel great. Win!!
And then…..something else happens, the transition moves beyond the physical body to the mind, the heart, the spirit. This happens in those small moments when we are quiet, when we are still. One moment you are fully attuned to the placement of your feet, the reach of your arms, the rhythm of your breath and then from out of nowhere a moment of peace, of timelessness appears, it is there that we “get it”. We get that we are more than our physical body and what it can or cannot do. We get that whatever is happening in that moment is not only good, it is great, it is all that matters, in THAT MOMENT. This is where the love of yoga begins, when one begins to realize that each moment offers opportunities, a safe place where we can just show up and do what feels right from one moment to the next. Some days we may find an extra bit of inner fire and take a leap of faith finding that we can actually do what we thought was impossible just a month ago. Maybe we find a humbling moment in which what was easy yesterday, is not today. Yoga offers us a time of reflection and acceptance. It is in taking the time to experience these things that we reap the greatest rewards. That awesome “workout” begins to become something more, something whole. YOU become something MORE, something WHOLE. The mind, body, heart and spirit begin working in harmony, returning us to our true selves, both on and off the mat.
You’ve taken the time to read this, and I thank you, but don’t let this be the end of your curiosity. If you have never tried yoga, let this be your time. Maybe you have taken yoga, but life got in the way and it’s been a while since you stepped on your mat, this might be just the right time to return. With all this said, there are things that keep so many from trying; they are not flexible, they are out of shape, they don’t have time for anything else in their life….these are all examples of reasons why we SHOULD try yoga! Yoga can indeed be the pathway to these very things, likely you needn’t look very far from your daily path to find just the right class for your current needs! Below I’ve included a pledge I ask my private clients to accept and sign when we begin our journey, please consider taking the pledge for yourself.
I sincerely hope to meet you on the mat soon, with much love,
Karen Weimer, Certified Yoga Instructor, Group Exercise Instructor at Valley Health Wellness & Fitness Center
Pledge to Self
I pledge to myself, to always proceed gently, honoring what I discover within my body, mind and heart each and every time I come to the mat. I will not push past any known or discovered limitations, but instead examine and approach them with love, patience and respect. I will love myself unconditionally and become a willing and loving participant of my own ever-changing journey never forgetting that this is about ME; my body, my heart, my soul.
Signed with love,
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