I went to my first yoga class as an eleven-year-old with my mom and sister and hated it because, frankly, I lacked the patience to think about breathing for an hour. But then I started going to classes by myself during the summer after my senior year of high school and fell in love with the challenge of uniting your breath with movement and the variation in dance-like flows you could create. Moreover, I felt more calm and focused after doing yoga than I did after doing, well, anything. Luckily, I found an inviting community of yogis at Yale with whom I could grow and develop my practice.
Yogis at Yale offers fun, free yoga classes to the Yale community nearly every day of the week. RYT-certified student teachers lead classes ranging from mixed-level vinyasa flows to inversion workshops to classes for the absolute beginner. No experience is necessary! When the weather gets warm, classes frequently move outdoors to Cross Campus or Silliman courtyard. Some residential colleges even host their own classes. One of my friends was a regular at the Wednesday 7am sunrise classes in Ezra Stiles college last semester. While I can’t say that every Yalie has that level of dedication to this specific mindfulness habit (of course there are other ways to check in on your mental health!) that’s just an example of how much you can opt in.
The goal…is to replicate the feeling in this photo…when you also have three psets to do
When I don’t have time to go to a class with Yogis at Yale or at Breathing Room (a local studio on Crown Street) I’ll look up a video on YouTube and just flow in my room (which is thankfully now big enough to do happy baby pose in). Yoga teachers always talk about how the best effects of the practice are felt when you can control your responses to difficult situations off of the mat through the skills you’ve developed from yoga. So in reality…if you can do yoga without moving…you’ve really won.
Sometimes you will even run into four pals from orchestra at a Sunday morning class which is THE BEST FEELING EVER!!!! And then you’ll go to brunch afterwards with endorphins coursing through your veins and a smile plastered on your face. And then you’ll make it a weekly thing that no one will ever flake on ever! It’s just one of the many reasons why the acronym for “Yogis at Yale” is YaY.