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Finding Yoga…

by Arundhati Baitmangalkar
Arundhati

I did not realize until recently that I have always been very passionate about physical fitness. Since I was a little girl I loved to dance and would take part in dance competitions at school but didn’t formally train till my early twenties when I enrolled in a professional Bollywood dance school. Soon I started working as an instructor and I was still graduating college. Though it was a glamorous life on the outside, dancing all day, being on stage, travelling the world, it was a hard life. Some nights we would barely sleep for a couple of hours working towards shows and stuff. The body was young it could take a lot of abuse. I loved every minute of it. It is still one of the best experiences of my life. I believe those dance days (read 8 years) shaped me into who I am today. A dance career is a rather short one. And I knew I had to find something else to do for the ‘rest of my life’. I tried getting a real job as the people around me insisted. This meant sitting at a desk from 9 to 5pm marketing something I had no passion for and running to teach class afterwards –  I worked all 7 days for a couple of years. It was hard but I still loved it with all my heart and more. I endured a lot of injuries to my body over these years and knew my end was near with dance. I questioned myself and my choices all over again. I started hitting a low point.

It was on one such day, that I woke up and decided to start studying yoga. I had never been to a yoga class before ever. Maybe did a few sun salutations every now and then with no sense of alignment whatsoever. I don’t know till this day what compelled me to take up yoga but I just did. My first yoga class was day one of my teacher training. I started with power yoga as it was close to home, seemed dynamic enough for me and I knew I was experimenting. It was not an easy decision as studying yoga is not cheap. (One training is anywhere between $1000 to $3000) I must say I fell in love with yoga immediately. It was hard with my Achilles injuries to do downward dog for even 30 seconds. But I totally immersed myself in yoga since then. This was July 2011. Since then to now I breathe, eat and sleep yoga. It is who I have become. It is who I am meant to be for the rest of my life.  I have travelled and stayed at yoga schools a couple of weeks after my marriage (my husband has also supported all my dreams ) worked from 4:45am to 8:30 pm day after day; met some fantastic teachers for a lifetime of learning, made friends all over the globe and today when I am far away from home. Yoga makes me belong. Yoga keeps me sane. Yoga is my best friend.

This blog is my attempt to share my learnings with my students and peers. I may not be very good at writing, but it’s an attempt to make people realize how glorious Yoga is and how it is truly the best thing we can experience. I am humbled each day in this journey. I am only a tiny ripple in this sea of Yoga knowledge. I hope you find learning, clarity and benefit of yoga from this blog.

Namaste,
Arundhati

 

 

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