Willimantic, Meet Your City Captain

Jun 29, 2023

How long have you been practicing yoga?

I have been practicing for seven years, and three of those years have been with Yoga In Our City!

What sparked your yoga journey?

After taking yoga classes in high school and college, I began practicing it regularly as a graduate student. As a full time teacher, I turned to yoga as a way to deal with my stress and anxiety. Coming from an athletic background, I know that moving my body is necessary for me to be my optimal self. After a few years of taking regular yoga classes at a local studio, I dove into the teaching certification. Now, teaching yoga has become a huge part of my life!

What led you to becoming a bilingual yoga teacher?

As a dual-language elementary school teacher, I recognize the need for more yoga and mindfulness resources to be available in Spanish. The opportunity to provide bilingual yoga classes to the Willimantic community has been so special to me. These classes have provided a space for people of all backgrounds to come together and connect with their community, regardless of which language they speak.

How do you think Yoga In Our City benefits the Willimantic community?

Yoga In Our City’s mission as an organization aligns with my personal philosophy that everyone should have access to opportunities to practice yoga, and other wellness activities, no matter where they live. I am passionate about the inclusivity and community building that Yoga In Our City classes bring to the 22 parks and 6 cities that we operate in each summer.

What are some of the physical benefits to the human body that come from practicing yoga?

Practicing yoga regularly increases balance, flexibility, and confidence. These positive changes to the body can make everyday tasks easier overtime such as bending over, carrying, and lifting. As people continuously reach their yoga goals, their self-confidence increases. Yoga brings so many physical and mental benefits, regardless of how you practice.

What advice would you give to someone just starting their yoga journey?

The number one thing is to be open-minded. There are going to be different breathing strategies and words that you will hear that are new or different. Don’t compare yourself to the person next to you. It’s not about other people, it’s about connecting with yourself. That is my biggest advice, to be open-minded and to know that your practice is your time. It’s about you and you deserve it.

It’s important as Yoga In Our City teachers to be aware that you have people from all different walks of life, from all different levels and abilities. In my classes, I am huge on providing a bunch of different modifications and variations. I want you to know that your practice is about you.

Why should someone participate in Yoga In Our City?

Yoga In Our City classes are a lovely way to get outside during the summer and connect with nature across Connecticut’s public parks. This is a great opportunity to meet others within your community and a family-friendly activity for all ages.

What is your favorite pre or post-class snack?

I am a vegan, so I am a big fruit person. I keep my pre-class snacks light, like a banana. After my weekly class at Jillson Square, I stop by the co-op in Willimantic for some dried mango.