I started yoga back in 2015 because I hated the gym I was at and I needed to keep fit. I was also going through a tough time with anxiety as there was a lot going on in my life at the time. My friend, Amy suggested yoga as it would help not only my physical health but my mental health as well. Anybody who knows me well knows that I don’t stick to things, I do something for six months and then I quit, get bored or walk away. Not this time, three years down the track and I’m doing the best yoga I’ve ever done.
Yoga is a form of gentle exercise, with a focus on stretching and breathing. I am a proud student of Yoga Loft Newcastle and I attend the Yin class on Monday. I don’t do any tertiary education so yoga is also a time for me to learn and grow, listening to our teachers talk about anatomy, chakras and how a pose helps our bodies. I also do my yoga practice completely blindfolded so I don’t get distracted, but it deepens my practice because my sight is taken away so my sense of hearing and touch are heightened as I need these senses to do yoga. I never knew how much I relied on my sight, no matter how shocking it is, until I tried to do yoga with an eye mask on.
My classmates are my Yoga family and for the first time in forever, I’ve found somewhere I feel I belong outside of my family and close friends. I’ll explain, I’ve never felt like I belonged anywhere outside of my family home and I felt like an outcast wherever I went. Now when I enter Yoga Loft, it’s like a sanctuary, quiet, peaceful and comfortable, and it’s like coming home.
My family has noticed a change in my personality and my day-to-day anxiety levels have dropped dramatically. Both, Mum and Dad plus other family and friends, are so supportive of what I do and they notice when I haven’t done yoga! For Christmases and birthdays, I get yoga clothes and equipment that I need instead of typical presents. I believe that is a sign that my family and friends love the way yoga makes me feel and that they want me to keep achieving great things on the mat!