Monday, November 26, 2012

Yoga

It's been a very long time since I went to a yoga class. I used to go when my friend Emily taught at the little "massage garage" down the hill from my house, but since she left and the space has been turned into a financial advisement office, I haven't been able to find anywhere nearby for yoga classes.

There were classes offered in Lake Placid and Plattsburgh, but really, I just couldn't bring myself to schlep 20+ miles at the end of a work day when chaos seems to reign supreme around here.

When I hurt my back nearly two weeks ago, I tried doing some gentle yoga stretches for my lower back to help, and my friend Emily messaged me that there were community yoga classes at Keene Arts in the old church in Keene every Sunday afternoon!

Perfect timing (on a Sunday afternoon, just when I need to get out of the house before I go completely stir crazy), perfect location (a short 15 minute drive), and what a beautiful space!

It was a packed class last night, and the only light inside the old church was from the candles that Robin, the instructor, had placed throughout the big room.

I sat quietly on my mat and followed my breathing for a little while before we got started. I was amazed at how easy the first part of the practice was - I'm really good with the standing and balance poses - but those seated/lying down poses that are supposed to stretch your hamstrings were a good reminder that, yes, I do need to continue my practice.

At one point when we were doing a side angle pose, I noticed that my feet felt strange. Sort of like they weren't attached to the rest of my body, and that I was sort of floating away. I stayed focused on my breath and brought my attention to other parts of my body, and after a few seconds like that, I was overcome with this sense of...joy. There's no other word for it.

The rest of the practice was refreshing and uplifting. I was glad that I had my traveling bracelet with me, and I took its picture in front of the candles that were at the front of the room, directly at the head of my yoga mat throughout the entire practice.

On the drive home, the nearly-full moon reflected down on the AuSable River and bounced off the trees and the light coating of new snow in the fields along route 9N. It felt like magic, and had I been able to get a picture in the dark of that beautiful scene, I would have...

Sure, this morning, my muscles feel like they're all made of rubber. But I guess that's to be expected when I sit in front of a computer all day.

I feel like I've found a wonderful new Sunday afternoon ritual for myself. I really should have written about it last night while it was fresh in my mind, but I wanted to just savor that feeling and the whole experience for a while...

I'm feeling ready to tackle the day ahead of me.

3 comments:

SaraBeth said...

YAY! I'm so glad you found a place to practice yoga and get in a little time for yourself!

How is your back feeling?

Are you going to start a home practice?

Namaste

JenVan said...

I try to do a home practice, but like everything else, it sometimes gets pushed to the side when there are other things that need my attention. So, yes, I am going to start making more of an effort to do more yoga at home. Now that Colden sleeps consistently through the night (I mean, he's only 5, LOL!), I have no excuse not to go to bed a little early once in a while and get up early for a morning ritual before he wakes up, too!

SaraBeth said...

What about some yoga before bed? It's one of the ways I manage my insomnia.

Hope your back is feeling better!