I had started yoga with one mission; to help my clients, students, and myself have a better range of motion while strength training. I had absolutely no desire for the “fluff” or “ooga booga” that I had associated with yoga practice. The weird chanting, the sweaty people, the humid hot room, I was definitely NOT interested.
But in my heart, I knew something about yoga was calling to me. I had heard of the benefits, and I preached the need for proper range of motion in exercises. So, I kicked aside my fear and doubt and opened up to the possibility of yoga.
When I first started, the movements were foreign but simultaneously and strangely familiar. As I improved my body’s range of motion physically, I noticed the range of motion in my thoughts. Not only could I feel my body expand while I twisted, contracted, folded and lengthen, but my mind did as well.
I noticed more space in my muscles and in my mind because yoga allowed my creativity to flow. I started to look at exercises and programming in my training regimen in a different and innovative way. There was an ability to be still and deal with tension not only physically but emotionally. When I would feel the stress of work or a heavy workout, I learned to take my yoga to the weight room to focus and breathe. I began to approach challenges with not just a rigid strength, but a strength with flexibility and kindness. Instead of looking at the relationships around me with an unforgiving eye, I choose to accept people’s quirks for who they were because I loved them. Yoga slowly began a journey for me to see the bigger picture.
The yoga poses (asanas) are designed to help with the physiological hurdles of tightness, weakness, or any number of other barriers our bodies can have in life. However more importantly, yoga helps to increase your range of motion in mind and spirit too.