Like most people, I’ve made a New Year’s resolution to overindulge less, exercise more and generally take better care of this body that I call home. I thought a good way to kick start the process would be to sign up for a yoga class. I don’t really look to yoga as a path to spiritual enlightenment and chanting makes me uncomfortable, but I fully appreciate the physical and emotional benefits of breath control, stretching and a focused mind.
Before the class at Alyeska, I wasn’t familiar with Forrest Yoga. At times it seems like there are as many styles of yoga as Eskimo words for snow, and you have to find what type works for you. This is what I’ve learned: Forrest Yoga will appeal to students who want a strong physical and emotional practice, paying special attention to abdominal work and breathing. Sequences of poses are intended to build heat in order to sweat out toxins and release emotions stored in the body.
Heidi Helling is a competent and engaging teacher, paying close attention to her students, assisting beginners like me to find proper body position and breath control. I left the session feeling calm, centered and stretched, and just a little sore in the morning. My goal is to translate the experiences I had on the mat into the distractions of my every day life.