Thursday, November 18, 2010


Some days are emotional roller coasters............ especially in yoga class. People come to class with lots of different expectations. Some come, depressed looking for an uplifting experience, others need physical release,for some it is escape.

Yoga, I believe truly does give you what you need for that particular moment that you are in class.
Some days I have students that are so stressed and emotionally drained, it hurts to look at them....but after a few minutes in class, the transformation begins. The eyes start to look peaceful, the facial muscles relax, the shoulders drop, the mouth softens and the breath changes. Some of them truly look like different people by the end of class.

Some days tears flow unabashedly and other days giggles are uncontrollable. I have students that arrive in class terrified to relax, scared to let their guard down for a second. I have seen it happen so many times, especially in Savasana(relaxation) they lie down stiff as boards, and in a few minutes, the shoulders drop down, the breath slows, every muscle in their body softens and they surrender to the exquisite peacefulness and stillness that awareness of the breath brings.

I have experienced those moments myself.......when my mother was ill, I attended a yoga class.
As I came into child's pose(how fitting) the tears begin to flow and for the first time since she had been diagnosed with dementia I came to terms with her illness and our relationship. Powerful stuff........there have been times when I have been ill, and I could barely breathe, but as I lay on the sofa and concentrated on my breath, I felt stronger, ready to reclaim my health.

Today, I had students who were beaten down, in tears when they came to class. We did partner yoga, and lots of heart-opening Savasana, I wrapped them in blankets and gave them neck rolls, by the time class was over, there was joy on their faces. Life comes at us all hard and fast. I know very few who take the time for stillness, who go inward and allow the peacefulness we all search for to come into their hearts. I am constantly telling students, take
five minutes every morning to sit in stillness and do nothing but breathe, it will change your life.
It doesn't take an hour of yoga, ten minutes will make a difference...........two or three poses, a few minutes of breathing and sitting still, I promise it works.

It seems the world is full of anger, full of hate. For all the religious talk we constantly hear, all those words about morals and values, we hear so little about caring and love. We hear lots about judgement, but little about acceptance. For me, when I teach yoga, I am given the opportunity to let someone know, for just a little while, they are in a place where there is no judgement.
For just a little while, they are in place where there is peace and stillness, love and caring. For just a little while, you can giggle or cry, and feel alive.

Peace. Stillness.


  1. "Terrified to relax." What a great phrase!

  2. I love this.

    The two times I was in outpatient, when the nurses were preparing me they put a warm heavy blanket over my body. It immediately made me relax.