I'VE ALWAYS BEEN STUBBORN
I’ve lived in Margate for over 4 years now and have been teaching yoga here for almost that long. I have taught at my studio, other studios, CrossFit boxes and schools. BUT I have never taught on the beach.
It’s a bit like sex on the beach. It sounds glamorous and romantic but in reality you get sand in places you don’t really want. Trust me. It’s not ideal. So I thought this comparison would be true. Nope I am NOT teaching on the beach.
This stubborn attitude is also the same attitude I have to swimming in the Walpole Bay tidal pool. It is FLIPP’N cold and I don’t want to be cold. I grew up in Canada and have spent enough time being cold I don’t want to put myself through it anymore.
Silently I would look on to those on the beach doing yoga and swimming in the tide pool with envy. But again my stubborn mindset would kick in and tell me I was better off without.
IT TOOK A PANDEMIC TO CHANGE MY MIND
But then a pandemic hit. But then my studio closed. But then I spent almost my whole day behind a screen and I was shook! Whatever stubborn beliefs I held to yoga on the beach and cold water swimming I threw out the window.
I wasn’t going to tackle just one of my stubborn ‘I’m never doing that’ beliefs- I was going to tackle both…and I did just that.
I put up a post on Facebook and Insta about a Monday morning beach class, crossed my fingers and hoped others would join me for some sandy stretches and moves.
BEACH YOGA WAS BANG'N
And they did. Monday, July 13th was one of the best Monday’s of my life. I needed it, perhaps more than those who came to class. It brought me out of a dark weekend of tears and sadness of another failed round of IVF.
I arrived on a deserted beach. The sun shining and the wind calm. Slowly, one by one, my friends and students started arriving with their yoga mats and their smiles. Some I’ve known for years and some who were brand new. We did yoga together on the sand, and laughed when it got into bits we didn’t want it to. We closed our eyes and felt everyone disappear as we listened to only the sounds of the waves lapping on the shore. For that hour I forgot about my heartache and I felt a part of something special.
We finished our beach yoga class and I knew this would become a Margate summer ritual for me. Yoga on the beach was now a part of my heart.
IT MEANT THE WORLD TO ME
I also went for that swim in the tide pool. I eventually started breathing again and felt my pulse return. When I could breathe again I was completely overwhelmed with gratitude for where I lived, the beach and the sea and also the incredible community that was thriving in Margate. Jumping into the tide pool is definitely something I will do every Monday.
I talked about new beginnings in my Monday class. It truly felt like that for me. This whole covid-19 experience has been incredibly difficult but on Monday I felt like I was waking up out of lockdown. This energy was palpable from everyone else who was there too.
BENEFITS OF BEACH YOGA
Connect with others
Get away from your screens
Get sand in places you don’t want
Listen to nature
Do yoga IRL
Improve your balance
Improve your mental health