My Journey with You Call This Yoga
I connected with You Call This Yoga for YogaFest 2018 when I heard one of my yoga teachers talking about it. I was having wrist issues that needed surgery at the time, so I signed up for classes that were not my norm including two different meditation courses, some restorative sessions, and a sound bath. I went into the day feeling bummed I couldn’t do my usual stuff and left YogaFest feeling like meditation and space to slow down might actually be more for up my alley than I thought.
I went through a wrist surgery and hip surgery before I made my way back to You Call This Yoga this summer. After years of pushing myself on and off the mat, I wanted to reconnect with my body. I wanted to show my body patience, care, and acceptance, especially with all of the heavy things going on in the world with the pandemic. Instead of feeling challenged and pushed, I sought space in my week to feel safe and grounded.
Trauma can mean different things to different people. I would argue that the current pandemic world is a trauma, a shock to our system that has turned our way of living and our everyday on its head. That can feel scary. It makes me feel out of control and, frankly, sometimes a little angry because I want to fight against something that I cannot change.
How Yoga Has Helped Me Cope with Trauma
To cope, I began the trauma-informed and healing yoga classes at YCTY.
In my first (free!) summer class, I felt like I spent a solid hour alternating between being cozied up in a weighted blanket and cuddled in a warm hug. The teacher focused on listening to the body, respecting the body, and doing what felt right in that moment. I experienced my body fully relaxed for the first time since the whole Covid-19 pandemic swept through the world, no small feat. I could actually hear my own heartbeat, steady and smooth, while my muscles melted into the floor. I didn’t want to move when class was done because the relaxation was such a relief for my mind, body, and spirit.
I’ll be honest, my ego wasn’t too sure about a trauma-informed yoga class, especially one that meant I’d slow way down from my normal yoga pace. Now I know that this class is transforming my approach in my practice and my life. I am slower to judge my body and kinder with my self-talk, which is exactly why I keep coming back to class almost every week. I know that time on my mat gives my body and heart vital rest and a sense of being grounded that I don’t get anywhere else in my life or yoga practice.
I’ll be on my mat for class next week. I invite you to join me!
You will be welcomed however you show up.
The article was specially written by Kate Reno for You Call This Yoga.