I love chair yoga! I’ve been doing yoga for over 8 eight years now and my practice has seen many transformations and setbacks. Yoga helped me lose weight while gaining self-respect and a new perspective on life. Yoga is an ongoing journey that has really taught me patience with myself and others.
I have had a lot of setbacks in the last few years. My yoga practice suffered due to physical ailments. I had tendonitis in my hips that made it almost impossible to do standing balancing poses. I also had tendonitis in my shoulders that caused pain when trying to raise my arms or do arm balances. These issues had me off my mat for many months. Once my tendonitis was mostly healed and I was ready for yoga again, I started having pain in my feet. Plantar fasciitis had me limping in pain for over a year. So once again my yoga practice was put on hold.
During these years I gained back much of the weight that I had lost when I started yoga. All of these setbacks and physical limitations also had an emotional effect on me. I found myself being more depressed. I tried going to yoga classes and found that I was in too much pain to move and balance. I would lie in svasana for most of the class.
So how does all of this relate to chair yoga? I had always thought of chair yoga for seniors. But I realized that if I had had a chair yoga class available to me I could have continued my yoga practice during my times of physical limitations. This realization started me on a mission to learn more about chair yoga and teaching it. Chair yoga is not just for senior citizens! If you have difficulty getting on the floor or if you have aches and pains that make movement hard for you, chair yoga is for you! It’s gentle and slow-moving. The chair is your anchor when you are sitting or standing. It’s not just a prop. It’s a support. And yoga should always feel supportive. Don’t feel intimidated to try chair yoga! Chair yoga really does make yoga accessible for anyone!
I teach a chair yoga class at 6:30 pm on Wednesdays at Unwindings in Kalamazoo. I hope to see you there!