OM Yoga studio is happy to announce Gina as our Yogi of the Month! We asked Gina to share with us a little about herself. Gina teaches on Wednesday & Friday mornings at OM. Stop in an meet her if you have not already!
Gina's Bio: With over 19 yrs. experience in the culinary industry as a sous chef, Gina's passion resides in feeding hungry souls. Through her certifications as a RYT, Reiki Energy Healer & Personal Trainer she remains drawn to the complete mind/body/spirit connection. She teaches from the heart in hopes to raise the natural energy vibration of those who surround her. She humbly remains a student of yoga an lives by her own personal mantra "Elevate. Train. Evolve." Gina is currently enrolled and working towards her advanced RTY-500 training.
How did you get into yoga?
-I have Always been fascinated by the mind body connection. I used to be an avid spinner . One day after attending a spin class with a friend she asked if I wanted to stay for a Power Yoga class to stretch out that was being offered in the same facility . I was taken back by how physically and mentally challenging the practice of Yoga can be and I left there feeling empowered and wanting more - Knowledge, Mental Power & Strength . I’ve been hooked ever since.
What is the best advice you were given when you started out?
-The Best advice I was given was to" Honor the Process." Yoga is a practice. Every one person will look, feel and experience it differently almost each time you practice. Some days are fluid, others days are a challenge - but you learn to work through the movements with breath and energy in such a way that strengthens your body, mindset and spirit.
-The advice I would give to my students is to arrive always with an open mind. Don’t limit your challenges, challenge your limits. And while each person will be drawn to their favorite instructor or teaching style - walk the line…get out of your comfort zone and experience ALL you can. There are so many different styles and yoga practices offered by a wide range of experienced teachers - all who hold a different story but yet a similar passion. Allow no one to pressure you or make you feel guilt for not practicing solely at ONE studio or space. Yoga is open to ALL. It is about unity, support, expression, transition, elevating others and self-love. Honor where your journey takes you and stay true to Yourself.
What is your favorite pose?
-My favorite pose is Triangle . I LOVE the openness it encourages. I feel like my heart is shining open vibrating and offering love out into the world .
What is the most asked question by your students?
- My most frequently asked question is usually the initial “ Will I be able to do Yoga? I am not flexible at all.” And to this I always invite and reply “ Of Course you can! Each person has their own degree of flexibility. Think about many of the basic movements you perform each day and the range of motion they require. For example: Sitting in a chair, scrubbing the floor, reaching high up for an item on a shelf, bending over to tie your shoes or running the vacuum cleaner. Deep stretching & deep breath linked with movements and poses helps aid in building strength, enhancing flexibility, improving balance and over all well being. Each persons practice is unique so options are always available to modify to your needs, use a prop or amplify and find your edge . The more you practice, the more your body will open up and achieve a greater depth in the posture and the body.
Why should people do yoga?
First of all, EVERYONE should do yoga. Yoga has SO MANY benefits for both mind and body. It can be used as an outlet for stress and anxiety as It calms the mind and central nervous system encouraging relaxation, increases blood flow and circulation throughout the body promoting organ and tissue health, enhances better sleeping patterns and supports over all well being. Continued practice increases flexibility and range of motion which can be very helpful in our day to day routines.
What's the best stretch for a sore lower back?
- To feel relief and release in the low back area I enjoy the Supine Twist.
Lying on your back, hug the knees into the chest . Pause here and breathe. Spread your arms out like wings , palms facing down using the hands as anchors for the body... On the next nice deep breath in, let your knees fall to the Right side of the body and send your gaze over your left shoulder. Pause here for 5 breaths bring the knees back through center- inhale deeply , as you exhale let the knees fall towards the Left side of the body sending the gaze over the right shoulder this time. Pause here for 5 breaths. Slowly bring the knees back through center and let the legs stretch long onto the mat . Close your eyes , Rest and restore here.
How does yoga compare to other forms of exercise, e.g. lifting, running, Zumba, etc.?
- Yoga is the perfect storm . It relaxes muscles & relieves tension while stretching tendons and ligaments. It will strengthen and build muscles using your own Body weight , increase your core stabilization, balance and stability.
Favorite book/s? Favorite Author? Is there one that changed your life?
- I LOVE to elevate and raise the vibration of my students by starting my classes with a deck of affirmation cards allowing the students to choose one and read a message that might relate, resonate or inspire them.
I also begin class with a brief themed meditation . I am drawn to books such as “Everyday Spirit by Mary Davis and “Journey to the Heart “ by Melody Beattie
Favorite music to listen to while you practice yoga?
I enjoy peaceful mediative instrumentals, Binaural beats , light chanting and vibrational sound healing with Tibetan singing bowls and gongs. This style of music can really create an experience and set the mood / tone for deep healing and self discovery.
- I encourage FEEDBACK! I want to create a positive experience from the time you walk in to the time you leave my class. I want to know that you felt properly guided, cued and safe in my class, in my presence and in my space. I would support any student of mine to dig deep , be open to asking questions for additional modifications or explanations to enhance their practice to suite their own specific needs.