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Laura Prior

I did not find Yoga. Yoga found me.

In my second semester in college I registered for “Intro to Yoga.” I went to the class a few times. Hated it. Dropped it.

In 2009, when I was pregnant with my daughter, Adalynn, I signed up for prenatal yoga. It was ok. I found the class to be beneficial for back pain and the breath work to be good to prepare me for labor. But, I could never really connect with the mind, body and spirit connection Yoga always promised. I found it really uncomfortable to “breathe into my baby,” “connect with the soul of my unborn.” It just felt weird. After Adalynn was born, I took a yoga break.

A few years later I started to dive into a workout routine, mostly cross training, weight lifting and light running. I loathe cardio. My personal trainer was also a Yoga instructor (Vinyasa), and I decided to add that once a week to my workout routine. Yoga was just beginning to hit the main stream of Instagram. The poses looked cool, and I was flexible. It began as an ego driven practice. I wanted to nail the backbends and balancing poses. I left feeling energized and had no idea what ujjayi breath was, no matter how many times it was explained to me.

This is when the yoga started to creep up on me. I began to change my diet. More plants and less cheese. I gave up soda and high fructose corn syrup. I began to become aware of my environment. I began to recycle. I even let a few spiders live.

I decided then to take my yoga asana practice out to other studios. I attended a vinyasa class once every other week.

Then one day, I woke up and decided I wanted to become a Yoga teacher. I thought that there were no unhealthy unhappy yoga teachers in the world, which obviously isn’t true, and I enrolled in the next session for Beyond Asana’s Yoga Teacher Training Program with Brittany Policastro and Maura Manzo.

During this training the yoga started to permeate me. I really began to let go, emotions and memories ran through my body and my mind. I became less reactive and more responsive. More compassionate. I even understood what ujjayi breath was.

During the training we fundraised to build a school with builOn in Malawi, Africa. Shortly after graduation me and my fellow teacher trainers hopped on a plane and our world grew smaller.

After teaching group classes for a year I decided to continue my Yoga education at The Yoga Life Institute for Comprehensive Yoga Therapy. I graduated level 1 in May 2016, and I am now proudly a 500 hour registered yoga teacher (RYT) and Yoga Therapist.

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