• To the Hilo High Vikings: What is Yoga?

    In the surveys you filled out, many of you asked, “What is yoga?”


    Yoga literally translates as “to yoke” or “to unite”, and this is a reference to the way yoga increases our self-awareness on many levels.  For example:

    • Before doing yoga, have you ever thought about the way your legs turn out or turn in? And how that affects your knees, hips and lower back, which then affects your ability to efficiently run, bend and twist?
    • Have you ever thought about the way an exhale elicits more power, or the way it helps your body contract?
    • Have you ever noticed that when your breath and heart rate slow down, your mind tends to slow down, too?
    • Did you ever consider that how you take care of your body NOW will affect the state of your health in the future?


    In this way, practicing yoga teaches us how the mind, body and sense of self are interconnected in ways that we often neglect.  To summarize a traditional text called the Yoga Sutras: “Yoga is the unified state that results from becoming steady in mind, breath and body on a consistent basis.” 


    I strongly believe that yoga has the potential to protect athletes (and anyone!) from long-term injury, and to promote physical and mental well-being and self-acceptance…making adolescence an ideal time to introduce yoga! I am excited to be volunteering this year and look forward to returning to Hilo High this week!





    P.S. To conserve time during practices, I’ve never formally introduced myself to you.  FYI, I’ve been teaching yoga for almost seven years, and I primarily lead yoga teacher trainings both here and on Oahu with my company, Shivatree Yoga School.  I enjoy teaching in community settings with a consistent group of people, especially to those who feel like yoga is “not for me”.  I have an Ayurveda certification which I use to teach about nutrition and healthy lifestyles, which is influenced by my education in psychology and interest in the environment.  I homeschool my kids, teach yoga, and attend college full-time, so I can empathize with your full schedules and feeling stressed…yoga has helped me identify priorities and find a way to juggle all that is important in my life, and I hope that it enables you to do the same! 

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