Q&A with Laura: Part 1

@evohoh: What led you to yoga?

Boredom!  I know you probably expected some enlightened or inspirational answer to this one, but it was complete and utter boredom that led me to try yoga.  I was 19 at the time and babysitting my nieces and nephew.  After putting them to bed, I went downstairs to watch TV. My sister had a Baron Baptiste Power Yoga VHS tape. (What’s a DVD? LOL) I popped it into the VCR, and that was my first ever yoga class. I remember it being quite challenging, and I got hooked.

@so_captiffating: How long did it take you to start noticing growth in your flexibility?

This is a tough one…I’ve always been somewhat flexible. The most improvement I’ve seen has been in the past two years when I decided to give up my other workouts and focus on yoga…EVERY day.

@joma1991: What type of yoga do you practice? What is your daytime job?

I practice Vinyasa Flow yoga the most…mainly because I like to change things up every day and flow freely on my mat.

I currently still work part-time for a software company doing customer support and project management.

@carey_j_: Do you practice daily?  If so, for how many hours?

Yes, I practice daily. On average, it’s for about an hour — sometimes shorter, sometimes longer.

@jasminenaamou: What has been the hardest part of your practice? How did you manage to get your family so involved?

The hardest part of my practice has been to let go of my ego. There were definitely points in my practice where I was forcing postures because my ego wanted to achieve something. It led to some injuries and some negativity towards myself.  I thought I was a failure because I couldn’t do something. That has slowly left my practice. Of course I still get frustrated some days, but I no longer try to force anything for the sake of it. I just work a little harder on the mat and leave the outcome there.

Getting my family involved is something I am ecstatic about! My minis would just jump onto my mat when I practiced and try to copy me. I have to coax my son a little bit more these days, but my daughter is usually quick to jump in. Same with my hubby…He was reluctant at first and would base me for acro-yoga because I asked. Nowadays, he has his own yoga practice and really enjoys the acro portion.

@kikimecheche: Can you come to Puerto Rico and teach us some yoga?

Sign me up!

@sowindy: Where do you recommend starting?

Start with the basics flows and postures. Try to find a local studio that offers beginner classes or find some online. Learning the basics will help build a solid foundation and allow you to grow from there. You don’t learn to run before you can walk.

@_kozette_: What is your favorite pose?

Handstands! There is nothing more empowering to me than balancing on my hands.

@imajill: How tall are you?

5’3″…I’m rounding up!

@sydneyecollier: Where do you travel?

Right now, mainly in North America, but that will be changing by next year!

@wastelandwanderer: What’s the best way to work on yoga teacher training while having a full-time job?

Honestly, I lucked out with this.  I found teachers that were willing to meet around my schedule. It was more of a private YTT training. I would recommend finding a school that either does private YTT or one that meets once a month over a weekend.  It may take longer to graduate, but it won’t take up too much time over the month to do it.

@shelss: Where do you get your mini’s yoga clothes?

Some of my faves are from Pepper & Penny (www.pepperandpenny.com). Some of the matching leggings were custom made.  K.Deer Haute Yoga Wear (www.kdeerhauteyogawear.com) will be launching mini leggings this fall though!

@nycfittyogi: How do you get into Lotus upside down without using your hands?

Concentrate on opening up your hips for a solid month. Check my article on hip openers for ideas. I’ll put this on my list of tutorials to write up!.

@myshelby: When did you stop being afraid in handstand?

I honestly never really had a fear.  I did gymnastics when I was younger. When I started my handstand practice again after starting yoga, I already knew how to fall. I think that’s why people have so much fear when they start. Falling is some scary shit. My advice to you is to just keep at it…The more you practice, the more relaxed you’ll become at being upside down. Also I recommend finding a local class that will offer some guidance from a teacher. Hope that helps!

@missbhaven613: What is your favorite pose?

Already answered this!  LOL.  Handstand, of course!

@susan_escalante: What is the best yoga class for beginners?

One that focuses on the basic postures with correct alignment. One that builds a solid foundation for the student’s practice.

@theirmama22238: What is your day to day diet like?

OY…Knew this one was coming.  I am not vegetarian/vegan.  I pretty much eat everything in moderation.

@yarahijazi1: Would you consider giving a workshop in the middle east? In particular Lebanon?

I’m not opposed to it, but I’m not sure my husband would let me go.

@bubblybug23: What is the trickiest trick you have ever done?

I don’t know about “trickiest” trick…but one that I’m most proud of is being able to grab my big toe in a Forearm-Hollowback.  It took me almost a year to do.

@astrid_natalia26: How long did it take you to support your own weight and how many times did you practice?

I’ve always been active and fit…so I honestly don’t remember a time where I couldn’t. My advice to anyone looking to become stronger is to keep a consistent practice or fitness routine.  Little by little, you become stronger as long as you stick with it and make it a daily practice!

@peskyesk: Do you do other forms of regular exercise other than yoga?


@jolienej: What are your favorite apps for editing your photos and videos? How often and how long do you practice per week?

My fave photo apps are PS Express and Snapseed. My favorite video editing app is iMovie.

On average, I practice for about an hour a day…so anywhere from 7-10 hours a week.

@jess11__: How do you get over your fear of lifting off into a handstand?

A lot of guided practice and confidence that YOU CAN DO THIS! I would definitely recommend finding a local studio and teacher that is knowledgeable that can help you overcome your fears!

@yogafanatic: What app do you use to edit your photos?

LOL…Love how everyone wants to know this! For the most part, my pictures are pretty untouched because I shoot with a DSLR Nikon. However, I love PS Express and Snapseed.

@t_jane_insta: How much practice (years and how often a week) did it take you to get this far in yoga?

Once I decided to go strictly yoga (about two years ago), my progress increased pretty quickly.  I practice about an hour each and every day.