started practicing yoga approximately five years ago. The York studio is located in my neighborhood. One day, I decided to take a class for no particular reason. That night, I could not believe how open my shoulders and chest area felt- I was sold.
Like many, I initially thought that yoga was all about bending and flexibility. However, I soon learned that yoga is more about strength building (in particular the core and lower back). I’m an avid skier- the yoga has immeasurably improved my performance on the hill. Skiing is mostly about a strong core (the balance and lunges also help), which yoga practice builds.
More importantly, yoga has a strong spiritual component. I’ve always had a spiritual life. When I started practicing, I did not grasp the yoga/spiritual connection. I was especially weary of the references to ethereal energy. That changed through a profound experience. My wife, Alexandra (Ali), practiced yoga for many years. I think she was one of the original members at NYY. She battled stage four cancer for many years. After a long battle, the disease started to approach the end stages. At this time, she was living in California. I mentioned to my favorite instructor, Rachel Page, that Ali had gone into hospice. Rachel took an interest in her progress. Ali passed on a Wednesday. I was beside myself and went to Rachel’s class in an attempt to inject some normalcy into the day. At that point, I was still a relatively new practitioner and struggled to make it through classes. At the beginning of class, Rachel stated that I had suffered a loss and asked that the fellow students send energy my way. During the class, I felt like superman. I mentioned this to Rachel following class. She pointed out that it was because the other students had sent their energy to me. I left the shadows of doubt and became a believer in the super natural powers of yoga.