I was stressed at work, exhausted from the long days and always juggling my children’s school and extracurricular activities, and constantly worrying about the next round of school holidays. My health and fitness levels had steadily been deteriorating and I had hit a definite low.
It was around this time that I discovered the mum of one of my daughter’s school friends was a yoga teacher and had begun her own business running classes from a home studio.
It was like she was there at the right place at the right time for me to reach out, ask a few questions and take that first step to providing myself with some ‘me’ time.
I had actually tried yoga about 10 years ago while a member of a local gym. So many people seemed to be raving about the benefits of yoga and I thought I’d give it a go.
I quickly bought myself a yoga mat and swapped my weekly Body Combat class (where I quite happily released all of my stress on punching and kicking an invisible attacker) for a yoga class instead. I twisted myself into this shape and that, not really knowing what I was doing. The class finished after a relaxation sequence but as I walked out the door into the glaring lights of the gym with music blaring and people pounding away on treadmills and pushing weights, I really didn’t feel any different to when I walked in. I was quite disappointed but decided to give it another go, thinking maybe it was just me or I needed more time to feel ‘zen’. Unfortunately, the next class was much the same and I rolled up my yoga mat and popped it into the cupboard of the spare (junk) room.
When I pulled out that very same yoga mat earlier this year I was definitely nervous, but as I walked into my new yoga class I instantly knew I had made the right decision. With classes held at my teacher’s home, the space was relaxing, welcoming and quiet. Beautiful music played and candles were burning around the room. It felt like the next best thing to practising in my own home.
Yoga to me isn’t about twisting myself into some strange pretzel shape, in fact my favourite pose of all in shavasana with guided relaxation where you literally lie flat on the floor and just relax. It is pure bliss!
As my classes continued from week to week, I began to feel stronger and better in the body, mind and spirit.
Yoga not only provides an opportunity for some ‘me time’ but I was beginning to connect and experience these feelings in my everyday life. It was certainly the catalyst for me to analyse my work-life situation and realise that I wasn’t in a healthy place and big changes needed to be made.
What is your experience with yoga?