My Life Changing Yoga Journey In Retirement
Just after I (Miriam) retired from my job as a School Principal, my foot seized up. It had been mis-shaped from birth. So, I decided to get fitter, and try yoga. I looked for a beginner yoga course near me, or beginner yoga classes near me. I also asked a friend who was doing yoga at Flametree Studio in Darwin. They encouraged me in my beginners yoga class near me search. So I joined the Flametree Beginner Yoga Course.
I quickly found that I’d been unaware of what stress was doing to me. I learnt that stress produces cortisol, which made me peckish. So I snacked too much, mostly for junky food.
Yoga reduced my stress. It also made me more mindful about what I munched. Yoga gave me the mental discipline, or mindfulness, to steadily cut back on what I was consuming.
I trimmed 13 of the big K’s in the first half of the year I started yoga. Yes, 13!
It was both yoga and consuming less that got me there.
My teacher says trimming is also about reducing stress. It reduces mindless munching caused by stress.
Gentle yoga I could easily do
I also found yoga was gentle exercise, which I could easily manage. After 2 weeks of yoga I started to get flexibility that I’d not had for decades.
We were also learning beginner yoga poses that began to stretch and expand my lungs.
Among other things, I started yoga because wanted to sit on the floor with my grandchildren, without aches. Soon, I was able to do so.
I also saw and felt various types of yoga benefits that I did not realise were available to me.
Life in the “beginner yoga course near me” that I chose
Before I went to the beginner course, I was worried about being in a yoga class. I was kind of self-conscious about what it would be like.
But at my first class, I quickly saw the teachers had read the notes I’d put into their health check form. I could see they adjusted the postures and instruction to deal comfortably with my situation.
I also saw that the yoga equipment and props would help with doing the postures.
So it all went very smoothly, and I felt fine about it all. Then, I quickly started to get the many benefits of the postures.
I found yoga is also about healing. To my pleasant surprise, it was achievable and open to me, and anyone.
For me, the other alternative was very limited mobility, if I was being polite about it!
I now see it’s never too late to start.
I started the Beginner Yoga Course. After a few months, I moved up to Transition level.
I’ve connected by PC to my big TV, as you can see in the picture.
With the Internet, every class can become a “beginner yoga class near me”. It’s true of each yoga class level you do. Plus my dog loves to lie about while I’m calmly doing yoga!
Doing yoga at a gym didn’t work
Before I retired, I was Principal of a large High School.
I had done what I call “gammon” yoga, at a Darwin gym. At the gym, I noticed how difficult yoga was, because you were doing yoga postures before you were ready for them.
Gyms don’t have the five levels of yoga classes that there are at Flametree.
Unfortunately I had never seriously searched out the options you now get with beginners yoga class near me… online or in-studio.
Because of that experience at gyms and other fitness centres, I was worried that yoga would make things worse.
But I soon found that Flametree’s yoga instructors are so experienced that I had no problems.
Good teachers make all the difference
At a real yoga studio, like you get when you search “beginners yoga class near me”, the level of teaching is very much better than I ever experienced in a gym.
The teachers notice things that you can’t see for yourself, whether you’re online or in the studio.
Then they make adjustments so you can do what is appropriate and useful, without hurting yourself. You can build up slowly, bit by bit.
As an experienced, career teacher, I know good teaching when I see it. At Flametree, I saw quality teaching.
There are also different teachers. They all do things a bit differently, which is good. It gives you a good chance to try out different teachers and class types, and see what work best for you.
At the beginner level, their instruction is each just a bit different, but they’re all following a beginner curriculum.
I quickly learned that even sitting and standing correctly is many months of work. What I mean is that it takes that long if you want to do it properly. It’s exactly what I now realise I needed. Posture like standing and sitting become the foundation for everything else.
I moved up to the next level of yoga classes
After beginners, I went into the next level, called Transition to Intermediate.
At both the Beginner and Transition level, I love the special focus Gentle Yoga class.
Now I also do the Fifty Plus class. There’s something extra nice about being with the same age group.
I also now see the interaction between the breath and my nerves. In the process, I’ve got a lot of calmness.
I’ve also been able to accept changes with much greater positivity.
The benefits started, and kept coming
My skin allergy just disappeared. Before that, I’d had it much of my life.
My mental focus also improved.
I found that the shoulder stand and headstand poses give you a real sense of the progress you are making. They also give you things like focus and strength.
I’ve also met many new people, and now I’m in touch with several new friends.
Before yoga, I had no sense of the so-called “back-body”. I mean down your back where you can’t see. Now I can feel it, and my posture is much better because of it.
I also notice that I’m not slumping anymore. Plus I notice if others do! Before yoga, I was just not aware of any of that.
As you know, yoga is a 3,000 year old tradition. It’s amazing how it works. I have lots of respect for what those yogi’s have developed.
Of course, there’s still a place for medicine. But now science is confirming a lot of stuff that yoga practitioners know.
My family and friends saw the changes
The people in my life are also noticing. They’re saying I am really calm, and even mention what they see as my radiance, and my new happiness.
The condition I have was affecting my hip, knee, foot and shoulder. But now they’re all much improved.
My walking is also improving, and I’m slowly able to do a lot more of it.
The restorative yoga, like the Beginner Easy Restorative class, is also a favourite. It’s great for sleep and de-stessing. It’s cutting the stress that’s been so damaging to me.
Throughout all this, my strength is steadily increasing. I can see it and feel it. I used to struggle with poses such as down dog. But now they are steadily building, slowly and gently.
My flexibility increased dramatically. After just 2 weeks of the Beginner Course, I could sit on the ground, with my grandchildren. My flexibility went up about 300% just in those first few weeks.
Now, I’ve got no aches any more, in any part of me.
My back pain disappeared too
Before yoga, my lower back was in constant pain.
But it was gone after a few weeks, and has not come back. For the back, the poses like the half angle were especially good.
All in all, there are so many physical, mental and spiritual benefits. They reveal themselves slowly as you practise more.
I noticed improved sleeping after just 2 weeks. I was suddenly getting deeper sleep with a more refreshed feeling when I woke.
With the shoulder stand pose, I was fearful at first, but I steadily got over that.
Now I see that these inverted poses have built courage … and that can be applied elsewhere in my life.
Because of what I’ve learnt, I’m also observing and thinking more before I act.
So many aspects of it all apply to everyday life.
My children say they’re thankful I have sound something rewarding.
My husband says I am more relaxed, happier, and with more ability to move. I keep telling him he’s also got to give it a try!
My prior impression of yoga was very different to what it has been like at Flametree. Now I understand that what I had done before was never with a properly trained teacher.
If I had done a proper yoga class years ago, I would have saved myself a lot of pain.
What holds others back from trying yoga
Most people I talk to are just too scared to try.
It helps when I explain about the yoga props we use to make the poses easier to get into, and to help get more benefits quickly.
My teacher says that if you are not in the pose in some appropriate way, then you can’t get the benefits it offers. I get that. It’s where yoga props can help. So long as you don’t let your ego get in the way, and tell yourself you don’t need them!
Many of those I talk to don’t understand that this type of yoga is tailored for the individual. It’s all done at a level that you can manage OK.
Before yoga, my perception was that yoga was about incense, music and whole-body relaxation, plus a few sun salutes. I was wrong!
I like that Flametree is not pretentious. It’s authentic. There’s no music. It’s just good practise at your level.
I’m talking to other people about it. I just ask them to give it a try.
Other yoga students on weight issues
It’s clear that other Flametree students have also seen great results from some mix of yoga, mindfulness, stress reduction, and intermittent fasting.
For instance, Angie says: “Over several months, I lost all that waist 12K (or 26 pounds) that had come with menopause … without even trying.”
As well as that, Guy says: “Over the 12 months, there were 8 of those K’s gone… and it’s continuing to drop at a steady 200 grams a month.”
A young mum, Wayan, talks about using yoga to get back to a much lower weight, after she had a child. In her story on this site, she comments: “Suddenly, 8 of those Kilos were gone! And I maintained it.”
Plus, Chris, the Senior Yoga Teacher at Flametree, also successfully manages her weight with a mix of mindfulness from yoga, intermittent fasting, and eating in a nutritious way. Chris says: “…the mindfulness that I get from yoga makes it easier to control my eating.”
By the way, there are also many other very positive reviews of Flametree Yoga.
Beginner yoga COURSE, plus other beginners yoga class near me options
LEARN MORE about the BEGINNER course packages, including a two-week free trial, or see the beginner class timetable.
All classes, for beginner and non-beginners, are both online and in-studio, so there is always a “beginner yoga class near me” that you can attend online. The same is true if you’re looking for a beginner yoga course near me.
The beginner poses are easy, introductory poses.
One of the key reasons that yoga is so successful with treating pain, including back, neck and shoulder pain, is the often overlooked role of fascia tissue in your body. That would have been a contributor to why Miriam’s pain was eliminated.
Of course, if you need more than what is said in Miriam’s story, then there’s also these numerous benefits of yoga.
Other options in your beginners yoga class near me search
The beginner double pass even gets you 25% off for both of you.
For those beginners who can only do online yoga, consider the 6 week online beginner course for just $37.50 (AUD). By the way, I (Miriam) now do most of my beginner courses online. If you want a “beginners yoga class near me”, then online beginners is an excellent option.
The NON-BEGINNERS deal, for who are new to Flametree, or lapsed 6 months, get 2 weeks of unlimited non-beginner classes for just $29 (AUD). Non-beginner classes include a Special Focus 50 Plus class each week, plus the Gentle Yoga class, Women Only, and others.
The non-beginner timetable has a large range of convenient times, suitable for many time zones.
If you can only do online classes, you can do 30 days of unlimited non-beginner yoga for just $14.95 (AUD).
The breath meditation or pranayama includes an introductory pass with 10 FREE pranayama classes.
If these deals are not exactly what suits you, check out all Flametree Yoga packages.