The practice of yoga is a transformative journey. What brings someone to the mat in the first place… and what keeps students coming back to the mat week after week? Recently I sat down with Mary Callow to find out. Here’s what I learned:
Why did you decide to begin taking yoga classes at Yoga from the Heart?
My counselor friend referred me to Yoga from the Heart a year before I actually came to my first beginner’s class here. I’m glad I finally did! I’m in my second year of regular practice at the studio now.
Why did you make Yoga from the Heart your home studio?
I recognized the skill, proficiency, and artistry of Lynn Burgess and her team. Lynn is very skilled in finding out what her clients need most and knowing how to help them achieve their goals.
Why do you believe you have stuck with your yoga lifestyle change?
In the past, I’d never stayed with any physical exercise routine for very long. But yoga was different. This I knew I had to keep doing. I felt physically better and my mind calmed. It feels like home. It’s healing. It’s truth. It’s love. It brings my mind in line with my body. My strength and flexibility have increased.
What benefits have you seen in your life off the mat since beginning your regular yoga practice?
In a matter of months I became calmer, more composed. I see myself as separate and connected to others. I respect my own and others boundaries. I can bring myself to present very easily now. This is all an enormous change for me. It’s a respect that permeates my whole life.
What would you say to others who are considering yoga but not sure if it’s for them?
I would say to keep an open mind about it. For example, I had always thought yoga was only for limber, flexible, physically fit people. But, actually, yoga is for anyone who is willing to show up on the mat and give it a try. Just do the work. Listen to your body. Know that you can heal yourself and teach yourself how to move to feel better. It’s your responsibility to yourself and within your own power.
Was there anything about the physical practice of yoga that surprised you?
The biggest surprise was how yoga heals your mind also. It teaches concentration and staying within your own boundaries. It calms the mind. I encourage everyone to try a yoga class at Yoga from the Heart. You will want to make it part of your weekly routine!
Writer: Dianne Ochiltree is a graduate of Yoga from the Heart’s Teacher Training Program, a 200-hour RYT with the Yoga Alliance, and has happily served as Lynn Burgess’s teaching assistant at weekly gentle yoga classes for Parkinson’s disease students. She is also a children’s author and freelance editor (www.dianneochiltree.com).