Without a doubt, it has been a year of yoga for me. Throughout all 12 months, yoga has wove itself into my year. Part of this was a conscious decision. Yoga helps me stay grounded and calm, helps me manage my stress, keeps my legs stretched out and my posture strong. When I do yoga, I feel like the best version of myself. So of course, this is something that I would want to share with my patients and kids in the community.
It all began in January with an inspiring yoga class followed by a really cool (and informative) Sun Salutation Workshop. I must say that the information and technique I learned during this workshop have been applied to countless classes since.
In February, I was at my local studio for a Chakra, Mudra, and Bandha Workshop and in March, I took a Meridians workshop. Both were full of new information, interesting connections, and lots of fun movements.
April brought with it high flying challenges and one of the best savasanas I have ever experienced all with the assistance of the silks. I began by taking a 2 hour aerial yoga workshop and brought my mom back to give the silks a try in May.
My experiences with aerial yoga were all amazing and if I had the money and access, I would LOVE to incorporate it into my weekly practice!
June was ALL about the yoga! I took a continuing ed class for work geared towards incorporating yoga practices and yin poses into my treatment sessions. Then, I flew out to New York for an invigorating 3 day Rainbow Kids Yoga Teacher training.
Truly, this changed my life! I loved every moment in Brooklyn walking to and from the studio, drinking fresh juice, spending all day sharing mats with other yogi’s and learning new games, poses, ideas, and stories to bring kids yoga back to Chicago with me. If you haven’t read it, you should check out my journey through RKY teacher training.
Before the end of the month, I was back in the silks with crystal bowls celebrating the summer solstice. I was also teaching multiple age group kids yoga classes weekly at work. Attempting to incorporate what I learned (which always looks so easy with adults) with kids ages 4 through high school.
In July, I continued to explore new studios and classes, making sure to get to a class on 4th of July Friday and the Friday before my brother’s wedding. In August, the BOY and I traveled to San Francisco where I made time for post run pool side yoga.
And took my poses into nature!
When I returned, I had full fall kids yoga classes. I found myself growing with each class in my ability to lead the kids and come up with creative themes for our day. I also found myself looking forward to the next week picking up meaningful quotes and fun new songs during the week to incorporate into my Saturday classes. I also ended up with the most amazing group of kids who took everything in…enjoying the stretches, games and poses as much as when they finally let go for their final relaxation.
In October, I taught my first community class along with an adult instructor. It was a blast and gave me the confidence to volunteer to teach my own class at the studio the next month. I was also reunited with the gong when my mom and I attended a Friday night gong meditation. I spent November being grateful and appreciating what yoga (through teaching and practicing) was bringing to my life. After thanksgiving, I taught a donation based Karma class at the studio. I was extremely scared (adult’s are quite different than the kids I am used to) but excited to see how everyone enjoyed this unique community style class.
The next weekend I was back at the studio for another gong journey.
For Christmas, I gave myself the gift of a yoga practice, taking the time to reflect on what I’ve learned on my mat throughout this past year. And recommitting to growing in my self and practice in the year to come. Which made ending my year back on my mat (well a borrowed mat) really special and fun. Even more exciting was feeling the growth, both mentally in my ability to be present and physically in my strength with challenging poses, that comes with a consistent practice. In 2014, I attended numerous other classes, some unique and inspiring while others rhythmical and ordinary. The theme throughout all the classes was that every time I stepped on my mat, I felt strong, inspired, present, and humbled. What an incredible year of yoga!
What’s coming in 2015?
Well, I’d LOVE to take more training geared towards middle and high school aged kids. I also really want to take an adult training. After much thought, I decided not to participate in the teacher training this January at my studio. I am sad but know that it is not the right time for me to do it. I will continue to teach kids yoga and hopefully more community classes. I will continue to push myself and grow on my mat and try to attend as many workshops as I can. I am planning to do a wedding morning yoga class. I know that I will continue to use what I learn on my mat in life no matter what 2015 throws my way!