Journey > Destination

During my childhood days, I went for swimming classes every weekend till the age of 12. I loved being in the water, I took swimming certificates, went for life-saving programmes and marathons and generally led a rather active lifestyle. When I was in girl guides in secondary school, I suffered from lower back and wrist injury during outdoor training and failed to take proper care or visit a chiropractor. Hence, I had recurring pain and discomfort for years. Eventually, I decided to take up yoga while I was in my final year of diploma at the age of 19. I wanted to change my lifestyle and become more active again, by starting with a low intensity sport such as yoga. Initially, I thought yoga would be slow and relaxing, however I soon thought wrong as I became more exposed to the different asanas, hot/non-hot classes, styles of yoga such as vinyasa, hatha, yin etc. I witnessed how yoga transformed my body to be stronger, leaner and flexible and also received comments from my loved ones about my weight loss and how my body appeared to be more supple.
More importantly, yoga totally cured my lower back pain through stretching and strengthening of my lower back muscles together with correct alignment during yoga practice. Yoga also helps to strengthen my wrists and gradually, I noticed how yoga improves not only my physical health, but also my mental health. I love how I leave the class feeling good every single time, be it a mindful, grounding or tough practice. It also helped me cope with loss and loneliness since being on the mat helps me to keep clear my mind and stay focused. I began to have a more positive mindset in life and stopped being so hard on myself all the time. I was not born flexible, so it was great motivation to me to keep practicing when I made progress in asanas, even if it’s the littlest improvements. I also realized that I prefer going to boutique yoga studios than big chain studios because boutique studios have a genuine, and friendly vibe and they create a safe and homely venue which makes me feel like I can practise with no judgements or fear, this is something that I do not get from the big chains. The former also allowed me to learn more and improve more quickly compared to the latter. Now that I am 20, I decided to take up yoga teacher training course because I like the idea of everyone flowing and breathing side by side, silently yet exuding such powerful energy. I hope that more people can be exposed to yoga and know that yoga is indeed for everyone, and learn about its healing benefits.
Done By: Mabel Sim
YTT September Weekend 2017

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