I wander into Lheidli T’enneh Memorial Park, yoga mat and water bottle in hand, ready to experience my first outdoor yoga class in Prince George. The sun is full and bright and the smell of summer is in the air; it’s the perfect setting to reconnect with myself after a busy week.
Dozens of people fill the park and dot the grass with purple, blue, green, orange, yellow and pink yoga mats. A low hum fills the air as people chat with their neighbours. The turnout is truly amazing and I’m so happy that I dragged myself out of bed early on a Sunday morning to be a part of this great community event.
The sound of the yoga instructor’s voice fills the air through a loud speaker and we are ready to begin our practice. It’s been awhile since I participated in a yoga class, so I’m a little worried that I won’t be able to hold the poses. However, the yoga instructor tells us to respect our bodies and our limits and I know there is no judgment here. We are all yogis today, not matter our level of experience.
We begin by greeting our neighbours and reconnecting with our breath. We take deep breaths in through the nose and exhale steadily out through the mouth. I envision a word that will be my mantra throughout my practice. I choose the word “strong” and feel my body filling with strength as I repeat the word in my head.
We move through a series of poses over the next hour and I remember how much the feeling of being rooted to the earth that I experience during tree pose. It’s the perfect day for sun salutations and I’m reminded about how much I love living in a city that has summers filled with sunshine, heat and open blue skies.
Before I know it, our hour is up and we are in the Savasana pose. My mind and body feel relaxed and rejuvenated. I am ready to take on the coming week and whatever challenges it might hold. I’m also looking forward to going to Yoga in the Park every Sunday during July and August and grateful to Chinook Yoga for coming up with this wonderful idea.