Yoga Loves Your Curves.....Even if You Don't!!

Writing has been so healing for me the last three years as most of you know. After reading one of my first blogs the other day, I ended the blog by saying "I am not a writer and not pretending to be something I am not". A few years ago one of my former students said to me in response to that blog "you are a writer now". That response gave me confidence to continue whether I thought I was or not. Thank you!!

I do not write to get more likes or followers. I write because it is healing and it has helped me tremendously as I mentioned in my recent podcast with Coaches and Authors of Hug Your Chaos; Chris and Linds Jones. If you missed it, you can listen here by clicking link below. AFTER you read this amazing blog from Curvaceous Yoga Instructor, Jen Cory.

Since childhood, I have always had trouble speaking my truth/feelings in front of others. I am still getting to the root of that, but in the meantime, writing as allowed me improve my communication skills and working memory. It allows me to express exactly how I am feeling, clears my mind, and most importantly it opens up my eyes and mind about my struggles and successes.

After Jen Cory wrote her first blog introducing her new class at SUKHA, we spoke about the healing benefits of writing and Jen decided to write another inspirational blog for everyone to read.

Thank you Jen for sharing and inspiring so many others overcome their fear of yoga, overcoming insecurities and self-love.

Yoga Loves Your Curves….Even if You Don’t

By SUKHA Curvaceous Yoga Instructor Jen Cory

Throughout my yoga journey I’ve read many books, articles, blogs, and so on.  I’ve always been fascinated with the yoga life and the feeling that I get after I spend some time on my mat.  I crave that euphoric feeling and keep searching for a way to extend it throughout my daily life. For some reason, like many of us, I keep looking for the secret to living a truly authentic and happy life.  I’ve come to realize that I’m not going to find the answers in a book. I need to put in the work both on and off my mat. It’s something that I am still working on and will continue to do.

With my countless hours of researching and trying to find the key to happiness, I came across an idea that is very foreign to me.  In Anna Guest-Jelley’s book, Curvy Yoga, I read that yoga can help you accept and love your body!  What!? It sounds crazy and counter intuitive, and I didn’t believe it at first, but slowly I am beginning to understand.  If nothing else, yoga helps you to learn how to move your body through the asanas and teaches you to honor your body by doing what feels right for you.  No matter your size, shape, or stature! You don’t have to be a size 2 and look good in your matching outfit with the perfect ponytail or man bun. You simply have to be YOU!

Don’t get me wrong, I still have a lot of insecurities and am still working on accepting and loving my body.  Do I want to lose weight? Yes. Do I want to be healthier? Yes. Do I want to be stronger? Yes. But I am actively trying not to talk down to myself or focus on the negative.  When Maribeth hired me to teach a curvaceous yoga class I was excited! She believed in me, and more importantly wanted to help break the stigmatism of yoga only being for people with the perfect body.  So, I decided to embrace my body and put myself out there.

My first step was taking pictures to help promote the class.  This was NOT easy for me. I hate pictures of myself and am usually the first person to hide when a camera comes out.  Recently a few events in my life have made me realize that capturing important moments with family and loved ones is more important than my self-loathing and hiding from the camera.  I didn’t want to look back at my life and see photos with me missing. So, I decided I was going to go for it!

One Sunday afternoon I spent hours doing various poses with a really cool backdrop of a cement plant.  I really just jumped in and embraced it! I was even having a good time doing it. When I checked out the pictures, I actually liked some of them and didn’t cringe when I looked at them.  It was fabulous! I thought to myself, “wow, I’m starting to accept my body!” Then, on the very last pose of the day…...I fell! I stepped my foot back for Warrior II and quickly found out there was nothing there to catch me.  I dropped backwards on the ground hitting my head on a metal machine on the way down! Seven staples later, I look at those pictures and laugh. It is yet another reminder to me that this is a process and sometimes I’m going to fall…literally!  What matters is that I get back up and keep trying. This is exactly what I plan to do. Hope to see you on your mats.

Jen Cory

Curvaceous Yoga Instructor

Sukha The "Non-Intimidating" Yoga Studio

This is the one that did it!

 

Get Up and Keep Trying

Be Confident. Be Inspired. Be Yourself. A Blog from Jen Cory.

Once again it is my absolute pleasure to announce Curvaceous Yoga at SUKHA starting next Wednesday, July 25th with Jen Cory.

The last few years has been so incredible inspiring others to get on a yoga mat for the first time and having them leave happy and confident no matter what age, shape, size or gender. Now there are specific classes for all.

Jen emailed me this amazing blog about her yoga journey as a "Curvaceous Yogi". Very inspiring! Thank you for sharing your story with us. 

Be Confident
Be Inspired
Be Yourself

Yoga has been a part of my life on and off for the past 20 years. I would always
start and stop my practice yet my mat kept calling me back. I would spend hours
searching out studios looking at the teacher’s pictures and bios trying to work up the
courage to walk through that door. Why you ask? Well because I am not your typical
yogi. I am overweight and not athletic in the least.

Walking through the door of multiple yoga studios was the hardest thing
for me. I knew I loved yoga, I knew I was good at it, yet I knew I would feel judged.
Some days I was able to manage a brave smile while the teachers looked me up and
down or told me “just try your best.” Other days it would shake me to my core sending
me running out of the studio after class to cry in my car. Never to return again. Yet
somewhere in the back of my mind I said to myself, “I want to be a yoga teacher!” Then
my self-doubt would return and I’d push it to the back of my mind.
About two years ago I found myself called to my mat once again. I started
practicing regularly and began to push aside my self-doubt. Slowly that voice in my
head changed and started to say, “So what! Let them look! Let them doubt! Let me
prove them wrong!” I enrolled in Yoga Teacher Training and was determined to see it
through. I had a goal and I wasn’t going to let my self-doubt or other’s assumptions
hold me back anymore.
Don’t get me wrong….it was Difficult! I began my 6-month teacher training
journey with determination and excitement. Little did I know how hard it would be.
Even where I thought I would be safe among a small group of fellow yogis (six women),
I was judged, stared at, and looked down upon. I still had to deal with comments about
my weight and abilities. There were times that I left the long weekends of training
heartbroken, discouraged, and ready to throw in the towel. Yet I didn’t!

Enough was Enough! I was DETERMINED to finish what I had set out to
do, to become a yoga teacher. I promised myself to be a yoga teacher who would be
inclusive of all bodies. I was determined to make sure that all people who attend my
class would feel safe and not judged or intimidated! That’s why when Maribeth asked
me to teach a Curvaceous yoga class at Sukha the Non-Intimidating yoga studio I was
thrilled! If I can help someone to love yoga and be able to find their yoga practice and
better yet, believe in themselves…. then count me in!
Is it still hard? Yes. Is it still scary putting myself out there and being so brutally
honest? Yes. Is it still embarrassing having my name attached to a Curvaceous class,
saying aloud to the world that I am a curvaceous yoga teacher? Yes. Is it worth it?
Hell Yes! If I can do it, then anyone can do it. That is exactly what I hope to convey to my students! Hope to see you on your mats Wednesdays 4:30-5:30.

Namaste,
Jen Cory-Curvaceous Yoga Teacher

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