The Yogi Next to You


The Yogi Next to You - Amelie WalkerWhat’s your yoga story? How did you find Mala?

I actually discovered yoga at a gym, because it was the only group fitness offered that didn’t feel like a chore. Still, the classes were large and impersonal. When I moved to Cobble Hill a few years ago, a friend recommended Mala. Their teaching methods just helped click it all into place and led me to a real yoga practice.

With yoga, unlike other exercises, I felt like I was working with my body for the first time. When I understood how to do various poses, I could do them…or at least see how to work toward them. I am stronger now than I’ve ever been in my life, and that is just amazing to me. I don’t think I would have believed I could do a headstand 10 years ago, for example. And there is, of course, so much more to yoga than exercise.

I feel comfortable with the Mala teachers and community, comfortable enough that I recently introduced my boyfriend to the studio. He and yoga are both big parts of my life, I’m so glad they get along! And now he knows what I’m talking about when I babble about asanas.

What pose do you want to do all day? What pose could you never do again?

I find Triangle really nice sometimes, I can feel so expansive. And I like Wheel, which is the only “advanced” pose I could do before starting to practice yoga. Of course, I got to re-learn it! Yoga does not equal gymnastics.

Eagle and I don’t get along, and I find Pigeon excruciating. Maybe it is the birds! (Crow, you are on notice.)

What are your biggest yoga obstacles and how do you overcome them?

It is hard to not be able to do something, and there are plenty of poses that elude me. I have to tell myself that it is OK if I don’t get this today or this week or even this year.

What was the last Dharma talk that resonated with you?

Here is my interpretation of what Janna shared in a class:

Janna loves fall. She loves it, but she was missing it completely a recent morning. Then a falling leaf hit her on the nose while she was checking her phone. Fall said, “Pay attention!” in a very physical way.

This story reminded me that often what I really need to be connected to, right here and now, is in front of me. And it is not an iPhone. It is easy to get distracted. Distractions can keep me from focusing on what I actually love or need.

When fall, which is my favorite season, arrives for good, I promise to pay attention.

Where is your favorite place to get coffee, or a drink, post-yoga?

My drink after summer classes has been chugging whatever is left in my water bottle! Two of my favorite bars in the area, though, are Boat (try Tuesday for a chill night) and Sample.

If you could practice yoga anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Early morning or off-season (ie. not blazing hot) on a quiet beach would be lovely.

How has practicing shifted other aspects of your life?

Practicing has increased not only my physical endurance but my emotional endurance. And when my brain is going haywire or stressful events occur, what I’ve learned from yoga is there for me. I stop, I breathe. If that doesn’t work, I hightail it to a yoga class!

We’re thrilled to bring you the stories of Mala yogis in their own words.  Maybe you know them, maybe you’ve never seen them before, maybe they look familiar, maybe you once knew their name, but forgot.  Whatever the case may be, here is the chance to learn a little more about the person practicing on the mat next to you.  Click here to read about other yogis.


About The Mala Yoga Blog

We are a Brooklyn-based studio that focuses on alignment, balance and community. Have a read, try one of our Practice Podcasts, or come in and say "hi" in person!
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2 Responses to The Yogi Next to You

  1. So happy that two loves of your life–Mala and your boyfriend–get along! And last I checked, you and crow were in a steady, strong relationship.

  2. Pingback: Chocolate Spelt Flour Cupcakes with Peppermint Frosting | Cupcakes by Amélie

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