Yogi of the Month ~ Hank Hecksher

I read somewhere that you are ultimately defined by 4 things:  how you face change, how you move through adversity, how you celebrate and how you give back.

How long have you been practicing?

On and off for a long time.  I remember meditation and yoga poses from high school in Miami Oklahoma (Go Wardogs! Class of '73)

What's your favorite pose and why?

Favorite pose is "Wheel" because I can't do it.  I used to, but can't now - I'm getting lots of help and encouragement.

In 10 words or less describe why you love yoga:

Intentionally accomplishing greater actions under duress - (we are meant to grow and yoga is the gentle surface of resistance begging us to try more.)

How does your yoga practice benefit your other passions/hobbies?

I'm a golfer and yoga helps me with flexibility and concentration.

Why did you start practicing yoga?

I started because I was curious.  I thought it was cool (hippie) - now I'm working through a recent realization that there is real energy (thank you).

How does yoga impact your everyday life?

Yoga helps me appreciate and be thankful for what I have and to remember that all things are precious.

What misconceptions about yoga, if any, were changed after you started practicing?

Yoga does "poses" but the purpose (of yoga and everything) is to be engaged and active with what's around you, realize there will be challenges (work through them), and always be true to yourself.

Teacher Feature ~ Arlen Goodyear

Arlen teaches Hot Flow Saturday's 7:45 am and Sunday's 10:15 am.

Favorite pose and why?   
Child's pose--so many benefits to this pose.  Tuning into the breath, disconnecting from the world, stretching and lengthening the arms and spine, hips opening and melting to the Earth.

First introduced to yoga? 
2 years ago.  Having lower back issues since I was 10, all my research pointed to yoga for release of tight muscles.  Intimidated by a female dominated exercise, I attended my first class in Des Moines, Iowa, and to much surprise, almost half the class were men.  I instantly became addicted.

10 words or less on why I love yoga?  
The escape from personal life and work -- just BE.

How does my practice make me stronger?   Mentally and physically--the breath is a powerful tool that we often forget about.  With yoga, I connect the breath to movement....something I can take with me outside of class with life.

How do you remain grounded outside the yoga studio?  I surround myself with good people--no drama.  If I want drama, I watch reality television.  Also my dog helps keep me grounded--he insists that belly rubs provide a well-grounded life for me.

Advice to beginner yogi's?  Pushing yourself at the beginning will get you burnt out.  Do what you can--with what you have--everybody is different. 

Mantra or intention?  Everything happens for a reason.  Just believe!

Biggest misconception about being a yoga teacher?  We aren't all gymnasts with extreme flexibility.  We do not perfect every pose we teach...we are also learners ourselves.

One healthy food I swear by and why?  Avocados--you can put them on/in anything.  "Nutrient booster" that has a subtle flavor.



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