I was diagnosed with scoliosis at age 12, and thought little about it through my teenage years and adulthood. In my early 20s my body started to ache – my hips always hurt as well as my back. During those years I was also yearning for a spiritual practice of some sort. I first found Kundalini Yoga and thought to myself, “I really like this yoga thing!” I tried out a few more Kundalini classes but found they hurt my back more. I tried Hatha, and Vinyasa as well. I had so many questions for those teachers! – Why does my right hip pop? Why does my backache? I would always be met with a blank stare.
In 2007 at age 24 I walked into my first Iyengar class in Gunnison, CO. It was my first time truly opening my body. We worked on opening the chest and the teacher even helped me into my first headstand. While in a forward bend she noticed my scoliosis. She whispered to me that I needed to unlearn all the yoga I had learned and start over. I was in awe to say the least after that first class. I became hooked right away, going 2-4 times a week, sometimes twice in one day. My second to third class I was so touched by the practice that I swore to myself that someday I would be an Iyengar Yoga teacher.
For years as I moved around the country; I would only move to places that had Iyengar Yoga studios. I found my body opening in ways I never knew possible. My back and hip pain started going away and I stood so much taller. Not only did I notice physical differences but also deep internal changes. I was calmer, more peaceful. I felt content and happy. I started changing my health in many ways, and discovered the spiritual path I had been looking for.
Now, 9 years later I am a certified Iyengar teacher, I have been to India twice to study with the Iyengar’s and plan to go yearly. I love the practice because there is always something to learn – there is always the room to go deeper. It is a lifelong (possibly lifetimes) journey. My teachers inspire me in tremendous ways. They actually have answers to my questions, and push me past my conceived limitations. I hope to inspire my students in the same way.
I am forever grateful to BKS Iyengar for his teachings.
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