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After my grandma’s passing, my memento request was for her 1980’s VHS tapes of Milwaukee PBS’ Hatha Yoga with Kathleen Hitchcock. Viewing the scratchy recordings, I could just make out her Danskin leotard and legwarmers, the same outfit that I wore when accompanying Grandma to her friend’s house for a group class. I fondly remembered Danuta, the instructor, and the special efforts she made for a teen among a bunch of seniors, even inviting me over to her house to discuss the middle path.

Fast forward: my lack of dedicated physical practice had shown itself over the years. After what seemed to be continual injuries of almost every joint, mostly blamed on genetics, two severely frozen shoulders rendered me virtually immobile, unable to drive or even dress myself.

Following physical therapy, it was with extreme fear of further injury that I arrived at Be. I tried Nia, even though I wasn’t sure that I would be able to do it, as I felt my body just urging me to MOVE.  Terese’s inspirational story and Amy’s boundless enthusiasm soon had my rhythmically-challenged self rockin’ out in the car! I tentatively eased into Deep Stretch (and Wendy’s acupuncture), during which I learned to surrender in this refuge. The precision of the instruction in Align and Flow assisted me in trusting the process, although I remained conservative, as Kelly offered humor and compliments, and for which Nan would remind me, “You’re stronger than you think!” Best of all was the camaraderie of the class, even “enduring” the spring cleanse as a community-they are such a fun and supportive group of friends.

michelleEKristine seemed to be speaking directly to me when she addressed the topic of sometimes taking a “too comfortable” path.  Toni told me not to be afraid of any of the classes, but it still took me a while to attempt Slow Flow and eventually Vinyasa, even venturing to the last experience that I ever thought that I would enjoy-a Hot class! My confidence in healing and preventing injury grew with Greg’s mandala sequencing, live music, and biomechanical tips. Intrigued by Universal Yoga, my jaw dropped when I saw Mara’s arm balances, but with her unwavering encouragement and high expectations, I continue to grow in my attempts of “best effort” in this “spiritual practice cleverly disguised as physical postures”.  I look forward to trying Aerial and Body Conditioning, in addition to experiencing new teachers. I appreciate the beauty of each style and feel fortunate to have such a variety of choices led by quality instructors. Their common denominator is how great I always feel after class, and how the lessons carry throughout the day! Yoga is now a necessity.

I enjoy being at the studio so much that I became a Desk Ambassador, emulating the uberambassadors, Lisa and Katherine. I learn even more about yoga and get to spend more time with positive people. I love it when new yogis leave class so changed that they almost need a ride home!  I am truly grateful to all the teachers and students, who are also my teachers, at Be Yoga as I continue on my journey of flexibility of mind, body, and spirit.