The Voices from the kahYoga Community
I am now a fan of Yoga. I had been afraid of it most of my life, having tried only a couple of times and been uneasy looking like a fish flapping around on the shore. Trust me, it wasn’t pretty. It didn’t help that I was surrounded by a bunch of girls, all of whom seemed to know what they were doing while I couldn’t begin to keep up.
Then my wife talked me into taking a class with Kelly Hurley, saying it would not be like the classes I had tried before. First, it would be a “Yin” class, which means slower and holding positions longer. Second, Kelly knew how to make the class work for everyone in it, taking into account the physical limitations of the participants and finding ways to make poses accessible to all.
In 2016, I started going to another of her classes, an Adaptive Yoga one. This one is geared specifically toward those with more than average challenges. Now in addition to her Yin Yoga and Adaptive Yoga, I regularly attend her Yang+Yin class too. Several years ago, I would not have bet that I'd be attending yoga classes three times a week. But I am.
I may have been skeptical at first, but anyone who could work with someone with a broken neck, brain injury, bad shoulder and lower back, among other challenges had my attention. Kelly did indeed make it work. Her attention to the needs of everyone in her class amazes me.
I've experience big changes through practicing yoga. I breath better, relax my shoulders a lot more, am more flexible and have dropped my attitude of having to be the best or else. For instance, I can laugh at getting things backwards. But I have learned to respect and enjoy the other participants, all of whom are learning from the class. I have found the benefits of yoga for slowing down, getting to know how to work with my body, and the value of the meditation that comes with the practice.
I love yoga. But I love yoga because I have a truly gifted and concerned teacher.