With something as simple as investing in a monthly pass to a yoga class, I have experienced so much change in my life.
I have been practicing yoga for around 3 1/2 years and it truly is something that works for me, fitness-wise. I love the feeling of strength and femininity that yoga gives me, the constant challenge and the fact that I can do it almost anywhere. (You can tell just by looking at my disheveled old yoga mat, that it’s been quite a long love affair).
For a long time I considered paying the money for such a thing a bit out of my reach, opting for at-home yoga sessions and using YouTube for inspiration, and finding free or gold-coin donation classes when I could. My first gold-coin class was at a market in West End on a soccer field in May 2013, and it ended with a light sprinkling of rain. It was here that I first learnt the importance of going to a class and a having a yoga teacher. But somewhere along the way, after the classes were cancelled, this important lesson was lost.
Living around the corner from my studio for over a year now, every time I walked past my brain would say, “One day…”, but in my heart, I was never sure that that “One day” would come, paralysed by the mentality of not having enough money. That was until one day (yes, that “one day”) I decided to give this paying-for-yoga thing a go.
I started off small, with a 5 class pass and promptly took myself to an afternoon Yin class. An hour later (surprising dripping with sweat) I was floating on a cloud of happiness and beyond proud of myself, and that’s when I knew that there was no turning back.
After a few weeks of classes, I began to understand and appreciate the difference between each of my teachers and the benefits of each of them to me. From Eliza, I gain a detailed and technical knowledge of exactly how each part of every muscle should feel and where they should sit, refining my poses so that all of a sudden they make so much more sense than they used to. From Brodie, I learn how to really use my breath to guide the flow of my yoga and stop comparing myself to the other yogis in the room. Then from Kellie, I learn how to use the strength of my muscles, instead of relying on the hyper-extension I can achieve, to truly utilise and improve the strength of my body. (Hopefully in time I will get to experience the strengths of all of the teachers at the studio regularly, but it’s still early days.)
Yoga overall has reminded me of the importance of mindfulness and my relationship with myself, but also taught me that in yoga, and in life, I can’t be perfect; that the constant challenge is a great thing that should be relished, and to take the time out (in child’s pose) when my body has had enough. I’ve learnt to be proud of my achievements, but not to hold onto them, because various factors can influence my abilities. My practice has invigorated me and given me confidence and fulfillment with who I am and my place in the world. It has also shown me that when I invest in something that can make me feel this good, somehow, yes, I can afford it, and it is more than worth the money that I pay. And yes, I am worth the investment of time and money.
Now, I am aware that yoga isn’t for everyone. Some prefer CrossFit, or running a marathon, but me? More than ever, I am a yogi through and through.
Now all I need is a yoga mat that isn’t falling to bits!
If you’d like to try out my yoga studio, it is Cultivate Calm Yoga, in East Brisbane. I haven’t been paid to endorse the studio, this blog is whole-heartedly my own opinion and my own experience because I am truly grateful to my decision to make CCY a part of my life.