Why park your yoga?

For the last four weeks, I’ve been teaching yoga classes on Sundays in different downtown Toronto parks.

There are a number of reasons why parks are great for yoga.  Yes, they are free – which is great because the classes have been too.  But what is even better is that because parks are free anyone can be in them.  Last week those of us who were at Kew Gardens became well aware that 2-year-old Marco is full of antics (owing to how many times his name was shouted during savasana).

Why is hearing Marco’s shrieks of delight (sometimes) better than the imposed serenity of a studio?

Personally, I think it’s because yoga practice is meant to be part of our real lives.  And for everyone I know that is filled with disturbances – deadlines, pets and babies, or worse, that voice in your head.  The real world is around you as much as it is in you.  So why not cultivate a practice that helps us find space in the middle of the chaos that surrounds us?

Secondly, yoga is about connection.  Some branches of yogic philosophy even define the word yoga as ‘union’.  The ultimate goal of yoga is about connecting to the part of ourselves beyond our homes, jobs, minds.  It is about uncovering the part of us that is eternal – and necessarily connected to everyone and everything else.  Sitting outside with the grass under our mats and the wind in our hair, listening to the rustle of the leaves in the trees is an easy way to be reminded that we are part of something much bigger than ourselves.

Finally, as much as I believe that yoga is for every body, I also believe it is for everywhere.  All you really need is yourself.  By doing familiar things in unfamiliar spaces, we discover them again.  This is how I have come to approach my life and my practice.  I want to bring that sense of exploration and adventure to you as a teacher.

Just like the summer, we get to be here for a limited time only, why not make the most of it?

Stay tuned for where we’ll end up when the barometer begins to fall.

In the meantime, see you Sundays 🙂


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