Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Rediscovering My Love of Yoga in a Basic Vinyasa Practice

Although I’ve been practicing yoga for more than a decade and learned to appreciate its benefits, for the last few years I’d felt unsettled – that perhaps my practice no longer served me.  I’d allowed myself to become frustrated with where I was in my practice.  I felt adrift with a loss of the spiritual connection I’d once felt to the Universe during my practice.

Last Halloween I attended a yoga workshop at The Greenbrier Resort that was taught by Yoga Fit Instructors who focused on the basic asana that I’d always loved but were rarely incorporated into the classes at the studio I’d loved for so many years.  My body, soul and mind needed that basic practice with the familiar poses that helped to ground me. My restlessness caused me to reevaluate what I needed and to make a difficult change.

After some research I discovered a newly opened studio offered the practice I craved with classes at the times that I needed – 5:30pm. I work from home and wanted a solid reason to shut off my computer at 5:00pm. I have the type of job that is never caught up. It would be possible to work 12 hours per day and still feel behind.  So the concept of shutting down to do something kind for myself several evenings per week resonated deeply within.

Jala Yoga offered an introductory plan that I could not resist. So I signed up for 30 days, made the decision to try every 5:30pm class and a couple of lunchtime express classes and found just what I needed – a practice with excellent instructors, solid basic yoga classes that work for people of all ages and fitness levels, hands on adjustments, an elevated spirit, a feeling of acceptance, a focus on my slow, deliberate Vinyasa practice that is not rushed as well as my favorite asana such as tree, pigeon, the warrior series, twists, shoulder stand, and half moon.

I’ve reached an age where I have no aspirations to master complex inversions. I am 56 with ankle and wrist disabilities from youthful injuries.  My goal is to maintain core strength, enhance my flexibility, continue to strengthen my back to avoid injuries, and to find inward peace and serenity.

After just a few classes at Jala I realized that I had found what I needed at this point in my life. That is the beauty of yoga – there is a practice for everybody be it hot yoga, an energetic practice that feels like aerobics, acrobatics, complex inversions, headstands and handstands, or gentle basics. Right now I need gentle basics and that has helped me to reconnect with what first drew me to yoga. I’m back to experiencing meditation in motion and the spiritual connection that I had lost.

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