I have never liked yoga. Ever. I have tried and tried and tried but nothing has ever stuck. I felt like every new year would come around and i would make it a goal, yet again to incorporate yoga into my fitness routine. I would take a class or two that would feel ok, but ultimately I would fall off. I love to work out. I love fitness and I love to push my body to new limits. But I also like to turn my mind off, recharge, and escape for an hour in a dark room. For some reason I just never felt that connection to yoga. My head would spin even deeper. I would compare myself to the girl next to me that in a blink of an eye had twisted herself into a pretzel. And as a busy body I never felt like the time I spent in the room was doing anything for my body and subsequently for my mind. So no matter how hard I tried, for years and years, I could never get myself into yoga.
Fast forward to last year when I walked into Y7 in West Hollywood. I was skeptical based on my prior judgment or shall I say experience of yoga classes, but I had heard good things, and the old school hip hop lover inside of me was intrigued. I brought 2 friends of mine, just in case I wasn’t feeling it, and on 2:30pm on a Sunday, my journey with yoga began. The room was candlelit, there were no mirrors, and the studio was heated. I immediately felt a connection to the space and felt comfortable. The instructor was motivating, kind, helpful, and did not make me feel like I needed to hold a handstand for half of the class to fit in.
To be completely honest, there is a part of me that knew I had never been good at yoga, therefore I didn’t like it. I know that we’re never good at anything in the beginning. It takes work, dedication, and practice. I have implemented these tools in other areas of my life, but for some reason I could not get myself to do them in a yoga practice. Until now.
Fast forward x amount of months later. I am still not amazing at yoga. BUT I am better. And I am actively seeking improvement. I fell in love with Y7. The energy. The people. The practice. For some reason when I practiced yoga at other studios, I could never seem to get my head to shut off, and would walk out feeling discouraged and not good enough. No one made me feel that way. That was just what my mind had brought me to experience. Hip Hop Yoga changed that for me. No no no you are not dancing and doing yoga in between (that was part of my impression before my first class lol). Hip hop blares from the speakers and the instructor leads you through a vinyasa flow. Throughout the class you are given opportunities to flow on your own. This was the part that had me hooked. I was able to move to the beat of the music. Experience the bass moving through my flow. Make mistakes. Not compare myself to anyone else in that room. Not be so obsessed with how I look while I’m attempting poses that are new and uncomfortable. And clear my head. I left that first class feeling empowered and free. And now, I leave every class feeling that way.
Y7 changed the way I view yoga and yoga has changed the way I feel in my skin. I am able to connect with my body in a different way than I am used to. I am able to set goals and achieve them. I can feel myself getting stronger in different ways. I am connected. I am empowered. I am changing. I am grateful that after all of these years I finally found a practice that works. Now I’m doing handstands in my apartment once a day, practicing my chataranga (excuse the spelling errors), and flowing on my own when I need to calm my head and my body. I have finally found that connection that I have been searching for. And of course, if you know me at all this will be no surprise, I am looking into getting certified.
For me, I had been looking to connect with yoga. For you, it could be anything. Yoga, spin, dance, or even a way to connect with your cute neighbor downstairs (I don’t know if I can tell you how to do that, but if I found a way to make peace with yoga, you can surely find a way to ask him out). You may not feel comfortable taking this task on alone, and you don’t have to (not talking about your neighbor we’ve moved on from that). Try something that makes you uncomfortable. Allow yourself to get out of that comfort zone, there is no growth to be had there. Get uncomfortable. Set some goals. Try something new. Be ok with being a beginner. Get out there. Just do it. You might surprise yourself. You might fall in love with something you never thought you would. Discovery is what life is all about. And that my friends is just some…
TWENTY SOMETHING TALKS