My Yoga mat is absolutely one of my happy places. As soon as I jump on it, I instantly feel this great connection to my body and soul (we’re going all out on the cheese in this post) and yoga has happily become part of my life and routine.
I have been practising yoga for almost 7 years now but still remember my first ever class and how daunting it feels. At university I was a member of a gym, which I barely ever stepped foot in, but one day I signed myself up to a yoga class with some friends. My grandmother is a 91 year old goddess and had been doing yoga for a very long time so I thought there was definitely some magic to it… if I can be as mobile as she is at her age then I will be very happy and I’m sure yoga has played a huge part in that! This thought spurred me to sign up to that class and I have never looked back…
I remember the trauma though, the endless shaking and thinking “man am I inflexible!” I was one of those people that couldn’t sit with their legs straight and just used “oh I have tight ham strings, I can’t do that” as an excuse. But there was something in that room with it’s calming music and choreographed breathing and movement that ignited a spark in me and just like that I was absolutely addicted to the process. From then, I signed up to 3 yoga classes a week; a calm spiritual one that I allowed myself to get fully immersed in and two vinyasa practices which I usually stayed at the back for at the beginning.
When I graduated and left my affordable student gym rate in Cambridge and was faced with £20 a class London prices, I found love in my own home practice. Now I don’t actually know how I found her, I can’t remember if she was recommended to me or if I just stumbled upon her, but this is when Adriene Mishler came into my life. Is it weird to think of her as a good friend? Probably. But Yoga with Adriene is the best thing youtube and the internet has ever given me!
For those of you who don’t get the pleasure of my daily company, you may not have heard about Yoga with Adriene. (I usually find a way to incorporate her into most conversations I have). And I am about to tell you why ya’ll should find some time to spend with her because I know she will do you the world of good. Her youtube channel is off the hook with endless amazing yoga vids to suit all abilities, injuries and emotions and I’m sure there is nothing she can’t fix (with the help of yourself). Her mantra is “find what feels good” which speaks so much and moves us away from just aiming to do a pose for a cool instagram pic (although it is always fun).
Whenever I am feeling stressed, calm, tired, energised, anxious, excited and all other emotions, I jump on my mat and have some quality me time… with Adriene. Her videos really can heal all and I implore all of you to give them a go! The added bonus is that not only do you end your practice feeling connected to your breath, body and mind, but you’ve also given yourself a pretty banging free workout! You will be so surprised at what you can accomplish in such a short space of time. She is also a pretty awesome human being and will make you feel like you’re hanging out with your best friend who just happens to be extremely amazing at making you feel great.
I absolutely love to wake up, jump on my mat and have some stretchy time to wake myself up or even finish my day with a bed time sequence and she has endless videos for you to slot this into your routine. So 7 years down the line, yoga is a vital part of my life. I aim to squeeze in at least 2 sessions a week, even if they are 20 minutes long, they keep me grounded and at peace with whatever I’m dealing with that day.
I have absolutely no obligation whatsoever to say any of this, I just desperately want the world to benefit from Yoga with Adriene the way I have and find therapy in your own movement. So if you have already tried her videos or if you do give them a go, I would LOVE to hear your thoughts and experiences! Here is her channel so you can get cracking: https://www.youtube.com/user/yogawithadriene