My health and my practice

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Having never tried yoga before, I started with the beginner’s course in January 2010. I was hoping it would help me find a quiet place inside myself and possibly help with recently developed asthma. On the first day, I was taken aback by how athletic Ashtanga yoga is, and I felt like I was in over my head, but I was also struck by its beauty and the grace and ease with which David, Paula, Melanie and Ann demonstrated it. And so my journey began…
I was shown the postures in a way that I could understand and as many times as was required before I could do it independently. Everything was (and continues to be) focused on my abilities and needs, and at no time have I ever felt inadequate, this is more about making my own personal practice work for me than doing everything perfectly.
The results have far exceeded my expectations, and are very obvious to the people around me. I have been told several times by people unaware of my practice “whatever you’ve been doing since Christmas, keep it up” so noticeable is the difference in me. I have found that quiet place inside myself, which I visit each morning in practice and carry with me throughout the day. I have found a new enthusiasm and energy for life, which I’m now making the most (and enjoying every second!) of. I have also found I am able to handle day to day stress and strain with good humour and patience. Yoga practice has enhanced and informed my own music teaching, as has the Mysore style of learning. My asthma has improved to the point that on my doctor’s advice I am now cutting down on the medication I’m taking, soon to be off it altogether.
Ashtanga yoga has transformed my life, and as I develop my practice I hope to learn more about it and how and why it has brought about such dramatic change. For now, I am happy to observe the impossible become possible, and the possible become easy, both on and off the mat.