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How long have you been practicing Yoga?
I've been practicing yoga regularly since September 2015.
What is your favorite pose?
This is a tough question, because I love working on poses that challenge me which I don't quite have the hang of yet - like crow or bird of paradise. One of the greatest aspects of yoga is trying something that my body is not ready for, and with practice, seeing my abilities grow to reach a physical goal. Incidentally, I would have to say my favorite pose is Warrior II, as it makes me feel strong, open, and focused. I also like it because it is the foundation for many other asanas.
What changes have you experienced in your body/life from doing Yoga?
Physically, I am much more strong and flexible than I was before I started yoga. Prior to September, I was unable to do one simple push-up. Now, I am finding myself naturally able to bring my body into difficult and strenuous positions, so I can put more focus on alignment and breathing. The benefits of yoga have extended well beyond the physical for me. Whenever I am feeling overwhelmed, stressed, or even experiencing physical pain, I use yoga breathing exercises and meditation techniques to regain focus and attain a sense of calm.
What advice do you have for someone who is just starting Yoga?
The most important advice I would have for a beginner of yoga is to get into the mindset of being a student first. If we look at ourselves as lifelong learners, particularly in a practice like yoga, we will realize that we can always find improvement; even when we feel we have mastered a position, there is still opportunity to go deeper, hold longer, or become more aligned or mentally sound. This in mind, definitely take advantage of all WBYS has to offer its students. A variety of classes, instructors, and teaching styles allow yoga to never be reduced to just a "work out" - it is a way to continuously learn, to really tune in to the self, mind, and body. Yoga is a very personal practice; try to find ways to make it your own, and be aware of the benefits it brings you as an individual.
Thanks for being part of Whole Body Yoga, Marie! We're glad you're here.