July is an awesome month! Its especially fun when we can highlight one our super cool students! Mal brings a sense of joy to the practice. His effort during class is consistent and focused, but always compassionately mindful. Sharing a smile and fist pump to both long time and new friends, Mal embodies a yogi open heart. Enjoy reading his thoughts on yoga and his own practice. Yay Mal!
1. Why and how did you come to practice yoga?
My daughters initially got me into yoga a couple of years ago as they explored
different ways of exercising. I knew that as I approached 50, I needed to get
serious about this exercise thing. I have always played sports – basketball,
tennis, and golf. However, regular exercise and me have not always been the
best of friends, and I have tried many different forms and iterations over the
years. However, I never stuck with any one form of exercise, because they were
too monotonous. That is, until Anjali. I immediately took to the balance of
relaxation and work that yoga, and specifically, Anjali brought to me. I have
never looked back.
2. What does your practice mean to you?
My practice continues to evolve – I believe this is a lifelong journey. Complete
with all manner of twists and turns. My yoga story started very simply, with
small goals. Make it through one class at a time. My flexibility and strength were poor, but with tremendous support from the teachers, I returned for more classes. Soon, a few weeks went by, and I found myself getting stronger and more flexible. I
believe the yoga path is one of small, almost invisible victories. One class has
you feeling great, another might be more challenging. But, when taken as a
whole, the trajectory is undoubtedly upward. And that is amazing. Now, my
hour on the mat, is an escape from the stress of the day and a chance to
3. What would you like to tell others about the practice of yoga?
Yoga, for me, is the perfect balance of work, effort, and reward. I find myself
focusing in class on each task at hand – or in this case, the next asana. One
pose at a time helps me focus. And, at the end of class, you have a chance to
relax and meditate during savasana. That is when I can really let go. The more I
lose my focus and soften my thoughts during this last pose meant that I had a
great class and gave everything I had. And, in particular, Anjali is an amazing
studio. I have never once felt pressure to perform, or pressure if I couldn’t show
up for awhile. The teachers are incredibly supportive of everyone’s practice
–regardless of ability. The positive energy in this studio is undeniable. I think
this intangible has also played a large role in my sticking with Hot Yatra yoga.