I started practicing yoga years ago, off and on. I became more dedicated to my practice within the last 5 years when I discovered how much stretching helped my lower back. I started practicing more when I realized how much breath work and calming my mind helped with my anxiety. As I mentioned in my last blog, I have been teaching Jazzercise for 20 years. Exercise is so good for you, but after a while, high intensity can start to take a toll on your body. I realized how much yoga was helping with my ability to continue teaching and teaching at my best. This was when I realized that I can bring yoga to my current students and help them continue with their love of fitness by introducing them to yoga.
And this is how it started. I decided to offer some simple stretch sessions after my Jazzercise classes at a moderate rate. I kept getting more and more interest from students. I started to add a little more yoga poses to the classes, and students loved it. I decided that if I want to get serious about this and be taken seriously, I needed to get more experience.
I started with some online courses and quickly realized that this was not going to cut it. So, I stepped outside my comfort zone and signed up for Yoga Teacher Training through Darling Yoga. This was a 200-hour training certification that took place in person in a yoga studio for 8 months. I had no idea what I was getting myself into, and I was scared out of my mind. There were so many times I wanted to back out and lose the deposit I had already put down to save my spot. But I didn’t! January rolled around and the weekend arrived. I walked into the studio with a lobby full of other women probably way out of their comfort zone too. There were 19 of us, and we were to spend the rest of the weekend together. 13 hours to be exact. These 13 hours were just the beginning of the 200-hour journey. I walked up to the desk, met the 2 instructors who would be training us, got my books, grabbed my mat and went and found a spot on the hardwood floor in the yoga room. The hardest part was over, I took the first step, I showed up and kept a promise to myself.
And it was the best promise I ever kept. I learned so much, tried things I never thought I would, like a headstand and arm balances, met some amazingly strong women and created friendships that will last a lifetime. Not only did I grow as a yoga instructor, but I grew as a fitness instructor, and I grew as a person. I learned so much about myself and was able to let go of some issues from my past. I'm still a perfectly imperfect work in process, but because of yoga, I now know I am worthy of all good things and so are you. :)
I earned my certification, but I continue to learn new things all the time. I continue with yoga workshops, I still attend yoga classes at Darling Yoga for my own personal practice, and I attended a 3-day workshop with Max Strom on breath work and how to use breath in yoga classes and to help people with depression, anxiety etc. I am continually learning and growing not only with yoga but also with Jazzercise and fitness in general.
Completing my yoga certification made me want to move on and learn more about nutrition and the importance of nutrition in exercise, sports and in life. I earned my certification in Sport and Exercise Nutrition through Precision Nutrition, and I now offer personal online nutrition coaching as an added value to anyone who attends Grace Yoga Studios. It’s a perfect fit, and you can get everything you need to create a happy, healthy lifestyle in one place. Check out my blog, "Why I Became a PN Certified Nutritionist," to find out more information about my nutrition program and how you can sign up for the program even if you don't attend Grace Yoga Studios.
I now continue my yoga classes as a small business located in the Jazzercise studio where I currently teach. I rent out the small yoga room and offer classes all throughout the week. Most of the classes are forty-five minutes and are tailored towards building endurance to your current workout programs. After a run or heavy workout, yoga will help your body relax while stretching, strengthening and lengthening the muscles you were just working on. Sessions are short so they can fit right into what you are already doing. Forty-Five minutes is plenty of time to work on breath, calm your mind, stretch, build strength and still end in a nice savasana. The real reason we come to yoga, right? The nap at the end of class ;)!
I also offer a couple hour long classes, Yin Yoga and Yin Nidra, that focus more on deep stretching and relaxation. As I continue to grow, I am hiring more instructors like Sam who brings more experience to the studio. Sam is 200-Hour RYT and has brought Yin Nidra to Grace Yoga Studios.
I travel too. I teach yoga classes at a couple corporate offices once a month to once a week. Bringing health and wellness to your business is a great way to keep employees happy and healthy. Contact me if interested in adding a yoga session to your business.
There are so many amazing benefits to practicing yoga.
- increased flexibility
- increased muscle strength and tone
- improved respiration, energy and vitality
- maintaining a balanced metabolism
- weight reduction
- cardio and circulatory health
- improved athletic performance
- protection from injury
- Lesser chronic pain
- Lower blood pressure and reduce insomnia
You do not have to be a member of Jazzercise to attend Grace Yoga Studios. It is a completely separate business. But, Yoga and Jazzercise do work really well together, so if you are looking for a complete fitness program in a boutique-like studio, we may be just for you.
As much as I want to teach Jazzercise until I’m 100 years old, I know that is not likely, but yoga will definitely help keep me going as long as possible. Yoga, however, is something I can keep teaching long after I decide to hang up my Jazzercise mic.
I love learning, and I love that I can bring so much knowledge to my clients and help others lead a more healthy, calm and mindful life.
Check out graceyogastudios.com for more information about class times, class formats and my nutrition program.
“Never break a promise to yourself!!”
Hugs and Kisses,
Darling Yoga Satsung
Yoga Get Together
Working on my crow
Max Strom Workshop
I did it!!
Yoga Teacher Training Ceremony
My kids even attended my graduation
Grace Yoga Studio Students
Grace Yoga Studios