These features are coming to the blog because many people are interested to know if "men" go to yoga classes at the studio, or if yoga is "good" for men, or if I teach yoga for "men". If you've read this blog before, you know that I believe yoga is fundamentally "good" for all people and at Grateful Yoga we teach to diverse groups of many ages, genders, capabilities and backgrounds! But I thought maybe it would be nice to hear from someone who identifies as a man. Here Grateful Yoga's premier edition of Yoga Dudes:
When and where did you start practicing yoga? I started practicing yoga in Albany, NY at "The Yoga Spot" in 2008
What types of yoga do you typically practice? How often? I would describe my practice as a vinyasa flow and (try to) practice 6 times a week.
Can you share any physical or mental benefits you've experienced through yoga? Mental: I have been diagnosed with post traumatic stress syndrome, depression and generalized anxiety. Before I started practicing yoga I was suffering regularly from panic attacks but have not had one since the first day I rented a mat. I still suffer from the aforementioned afflictions but yoga has afforded me an assortment of tools to deal with these issues constructively. Physically: been told I got a nice butt.
What sorts of other activities fill your days in VT? On the regular I grind out a 9-5 day but work in an exciting field that I'm contractually obligated not to talk about. Ha ha. I was on a ten year VT hiatus and have been back in the state I was born and raised in for less than a year. Currently I find myself falling in love all over again with things I took for granted as a child. Swimmin' holes, hikes, physical space and solitude. Oh and cheese. I eat tons of VT cheese.
Why do you continue to practice yoga? I continue to practice yoga because it is imperative to my survival. I do not hesitate to say that I would not be here right now if yoga wasn't injected into my life.
Is there anything you would like to share with readers who are apprehensive about trying yoga? Yoga is accessible to everyone. There is a modification to suit anyone's personal needs for every pose.
Anything else? In most parts of the U.S. there is a glaring stigma surrounding male yoga practitioners. Personally I've been called out by "men" who consider it effeminate and "women" that assumed I was just in a class to gawk at them. (Sorry for the gender pronouns)
It can be a potentially harrowing leap of faith for a cis male to step into a yoga studio but I promise it's worth it.
Additionally, if you already have an established yoga practice I recommend you find a way to get into a yoga teacher training at Grateful Yoga. I received my 200 hr RYT several years ago and it was a life altering experience. The yoga was secondary, the shift in my perspective primary.
A huge thanks to Jared for his contribution not only to the blog but to the Grateful family and the greater good. Stay tuned for more featured Yoga Dudes and CLICK HERE to learn more about the 200 + 300 hour training options at Grateful Yoga!