What Yoga Means to Me by Tim Rinaldi
This summer I was one of a team of ten who took part in a charity row across the channel. (The long way: 68 miles from Ramsgate to Belgium, in particularly rough seas…let me know if you want to see the video on my phone!). As part of training, it was recommended that we do yoga - that's how it all started!
I took some classes with Jo Davey. Having never done yoga before, I had no preconceptions. We came to yoga to improve our flexibility and core strength, but it soon became apparent that there is so much more to it than that. I had thought that Jo would be able to show us a few moves and off we'd go to 'do yoga' ourselves. I certainly wasn't expecting quite such a workout, or to sweat so much!
I didn't expect the variety of poses; to be honest I like having a go at poses which at first glance might look unachievable. When postures are broken down into small steps they are surprisingly within my grasp! (I'm still working on standing on my head).
My flexibility has no doubt improved. Yoga has also helped with long term back pain and has eased general aches and pains. It's helped with my running; my legs are definitely more flexible and freer. It's been a great complement to all the gym training and I'm sure it has helped me avoid injuries.
The classes involved much more than I expected them to. I like that it's a level playing field, I can be on a mat next to a 70-year-old lady & her flexibility & strength can put me to shame.
The yoga dharma (Jo had to tell me that word), also seems to sit well with me. Little words of wisdom from yoga have found their way into my everyday thoughts.
Taking notice of my breathing has helped me relax. The breathing comes into play when my darling children are pushing their boundaries. Seriously, it has helped with the kids - to come away from that brink of losing my patience, take a breath and then all is well.........most of the time!
I like the idea of a moving meditation. I've also enjoyed going to yoga with my mates, and going to the pub afterwards. In short, I'm a convert! I'm much bendier than I used to be, and I feel better.