On Practice: An Interview with Michelle Corey

In preparation for the upcoming Cultivating Your Personal Yoga Practice Online Retreat which starts Monday, February 3rd, I’ve been thinking about and collecting wisdom from local and international yoga teachers as well as student-practioners on aspects of a personal practice. Since many of you know this snazzy lady, I thought I’d share my interview with the one and only Michelle Corey, E-RYT. If you don’t know her, Michelle’s awesome. You can find her teaching at Cisco, The Cary Family Y and EVOLVE Movement. 

Michelle rocking Surya Yantrasana (Sun Dial Pose)

How did you begin your personal yoga/asana practice?
I began my yoga practice on a regular basis, during my RYT teacher training.  We were supposed to practice once a day.  I forget the duration requirement, it was 2001, but the time for each practice varied from 15 to 60 minutes.

What obstacles get in the way of your asana practice and how do you navigate them?
Obstacles can be many, from injury, recovery, other family members and on and on…  I navigate them now, by knowing not to worry, that I’m not on my mat as much as I would like. I now know, that my regular asana practice will eventually return.  But that perspective took some time to come to.  🙂

How has your asana practice evolved as a result of traveling/aging/hip replacement?
How my practice has changed is interesting.  As mentioned, during injury or surgery, the asana aspect of my life is not happening, but it’s then that the lessons that are garnered as a result of having an asana practice are put to the test.  The big one that comes to mind at the moment, is to remember to first, be kind to myself, then that tends to trickle out to others.  The age thing is real.  My practice now is not like it was when I began.  I find that I move more slowly, but I really enjoy the slower pace.  I do find that I still combat ego on a regular basis, just comparing my asana skills to others can be humbling.  I could go on for a while here, but I won’t.  😉

How do you balance your asana practice with your other cardio activities?  
My cardio practice is about twice a week, where my asana practice is about 5 times per week.  Balancing the two is not a problem.  I think the body thrives with change and asking it to do different things is good for body and brain.

What keeps you coming back to your mat?
What keeps me coming back to my mat is the spiritual aspect/component of the movement. For me it truly is my church, my meditation in movement.

On a practical level, Yogaglo.com has been a wonderful tool for maintaining a home practice and an easy way to check and play with other styles of hatha yoga.

How does your asana practice help you serve the world?
How my yoga helps me serve the world is pretty simple.  I think it makes me a kinder, gentler person and this world needs more of that.

For more insightful and inspiring perspectives on personal yoga practice join us for the Online Retreat. As a bonus, register in the next 24 hours and take 10% off the registration! 

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