On my return from the States following a car accident, I never thought in my wildest dreams that I would be practising yoga, let alone teaching it! It was at this dark and tough period of my life that I was encouraged by those around me to explore yoga. In all honesty, initially I did not have the desire to explore it and it took a fair bit of convincing to get me to attend my first class. What started as an eye-opening class with me struggling to even touch my toes, soon became an integral part of my life.
I believe I was very lucky in that my first Yoga teacher, Saima Khan, was a remarkable teacher who was extremely patient and was truly passionate about the practice. The more yoga I did, the more I was drawn towards it. The more flexible I became, the more thirst I developed for the complicated yoga poses. I eventually fell in love with yoga, and was surprised at how misinformed I was before I I started my journey. It was not just about the breathing and the colourful yoga mats, but about the spiritual and mental discovery and physical benefits with the posses.
I soon saw myself becoming calmer and more patient, and the physical benefits (weight loss, flexibility, stronger muscles) were increasingly noticeable by others and myself. I started becoming more mindful of putting good things in my body by eating clean, and before I knew it I had lost 65 lbs! This weight loss came a lot easier than the various crash diets which I had done earlier, all of which saw my weight coming back as they were not sustainable. This weight loss felt more permanent than the ones before, and the most important thing was that I was enjoying the process. My insomnia and anxiety disappeared and my first arm balance was when I decided that I wanted to help others discover the beauty of yoga. So I did all the necessary work to become a teacher; and never looked back!
By the grace of God, What started out as a class of four students has now grown into an institution running 200 classes a month with a variety of different classes. Being able to positively impact other people’s lives and their perception about Power Yoga gives me and my team of trained teachers a natural high. When my students are able to do complicated poses, or send me pictures of their weight loss, the excitement on their faces reminds me why I love doing what I do. When those who have struggled with years of weight issues, depression and other illnesses come up to me after class to tell me how yoga has changed their lives, the satisfaction and elation I feel is something I can’t describe in words. It is my students’ positivity and encouragement that makes me want to wake up each morning thinking about what else I can do to help them and make their practise more enjoyable. It makes all those evenings and weekends spent working worth it. I am lucky to be able to affect the lives of so many people in a positive way, and it is truly a blessing that I cannot thank God enough for. AQPY is nothing without my amazing teachers and wonderful students, who make me fall more in love with my work everyday.