Last week I had the opportunity to teach a very cool, very different class with my friends at Wellvyl and it was a *HUGE* success. I know many of you weren't able to make the class, so I wanted to share a quick recap of the event as well as some awesome photos that were taken.
If you are not familiar with Wellvyl, they are a cool new biz here in NYC that organizes fitness classes, healthy happy hours, and dinner parties that allow people to meet and mingle while doing an activity that’s good for the body and mind. I love this concept (read more here: How Working Out is the New Going Out) and so I was super excited when Wellvyl approached me wanting to partner for an event.
Since the whole purpose of Wellvyl is to get people to meet and mingle, we decided a partner-style yoga class would be a perfect fit! I had never taught anything along these lines before the class. I had a blast researching and planning out a sequence that would facilitate conversation and connection throughout the night, but I was also nervous to teach since this was totally outside my comfort zone!
Here's what went down the night of the event:
6:45-7:00PM - Welcome and introductions. Part of the fun was that we all also took on a "kinky" persona for the night, based on a favorite yoga pose. Mine was Twisted Dancer :)
7:00-8:15PM - Yoga time!! Before class, I offered everyone a little Ylang Ylang essential oil which is said to be a natural aphrodisiac. We then began class with some exercises aimed to warm up those areas of the body where we hold the most tension - our hips, shoulders, wrists, and ankles. We finished our warm up with a few sun salutations and then it was play time!
First, we practiced poses where we needed to get in touch with our selves - balancing poses! I encouraged the class to have fun with these, and not to worry if they fell out of a pose. Balance is all about getting back up, not being perfect 100% of the time.
We then moved on to our partner poses. These postures required communication, trust and a hefty dose of PLAY. I think everyone was surprised at what they were able to do with their partners when they just gave it a try!
Finally, we broke into "threesomes" for a few more poses. Honestly, I wasn't sure how these would work, but everyone did great and more importantly, had FUN while trying out some more difficult postures. There were plenty of laughs along the way.
We ended class back on our individual mats for a well-deserved savasana made even more blissful with my homemade Lavender essential oil spray.
After class, we all circled back up for more snacks and to share about our experience. Here are just a few things participants had to say:
"I feel so much lighter in my body and in my mind!"
"I feel better about humanity in general after that class."
"I haven't laughed so hard in YEARS."
"I can't believe I got into that pose!! AMAZING!"
Hearing these words reminded me WHY I practice and teach yoga - it's not about being "in shape" or finding nirvana - it's about connection. Connection to ourselves, connection to those around us, connection to the present moment. Real connection is something we crave in today's society, and I'm not talking about followers on Instagram or likes on Facebook. I'm talking about the eye-to-eye or hand-in-hand moments when you really see or feel someone else. This real connection was something we experienced last week. Thank you Wellvyl for doing what you do and for letting me be a part of it.
Thank you to the Wellvyl team for putting together such an amazing event. Thank you to our sponsors: Bai, Harmless Harvest, and ALOHA. Thank you to Kyle Phillips and Kristin Rafael for capturing the photos of the event featured in this post.