I was taught compassion by my own broken body last week. Waking up with a spine that refuses to move or let anything else move will do that to a person. I spent the first few hours testing myself with some gentle pilates and yoga moves, the next few hours finding a good chiropractor, and the next few days panicking at the thought that I might truly be stuck.
What if I could never move again? Never do yoga or pilates again? Never carry my children again? It was depressing! It broke me. I cried. I prayed. I threw a couple good fits and then I felt something else: Shock.
How many fitness clients have I worked with who are desperate to rise above the depression that comes from being temporarily or permanently disabled? I’ve seen their frustration, and I’ve always been passionate to help them as they struggle to heal an injured body and reconnect it to an injured soul. Last week, though, I was the one in their shoes, burdened with a sudden sense of real and deep sympathy for what they actually experience on a daily basis.
Having been raised in a faith-filled home, I have always seen my personal training clients as whole beings, thus my holistic approach. I am not just my physical body! When my body doesn’t move right for days or weeks on end, it affects my thoughts, my heart, my soul. And I am not unique. Physical setbacks, injuries, obesity and disability are closely related to high depression rates all over the world! If you can’t move, if you’re stuck on the couch of your life’s living room, your soul is stuck, too!
Divorcing our bodies from our spirits and minds is costly. It implies giving up on one or the other, or getting custody of one for the weekends, and spending time with the others only on holidays like Christmas and Easter.
Instead, my passion is to remarry your body to your soul and mind, bring that connection deeper and deeper and make every movement into a meditation. My yoga journey isn’t just poses but a passion for holiness, for cleanliness, for rising above. I wasn’t able to do a lot of yoga or pilates last week, but I could do a little, and that little amount kept me going.
Back when I first discovered Yoga, I was skeptical of it as a gateway to divine connection because it wasn’t “Christian.” But now – because it is one of the only exercise platforms that encourages people to begin or continue their spiritual journey – I see it as the perfect physical path toward faith and trust in the Creator and the salvation he offers through his Son. Everything else (step, cycling, lifting) is just movement for the sake of sweating. It’s healthy, but it isn’t holistic.
That is why my teaching style goes deeper than downward dog. I want to stretch your body and your mind. I want to leave you thinking. I want your lungs to feel full of oxygen and your heart to feel full the knowledge of the grace and peace that can be yours when you dare to trust the One.