By Christina Kauffmann, Community Coordinator
In February, there are many national days to observe. Popularly, the second month of the year is best known for heart health awareness and its unusual number of days. However, February is also Black History Month, highlighting the achievements of African Americans and the integral roles played throughout U.S. history. At Nectar Yoga Studios, we celebrate this month all year round by embracing diversity and encouraging inclusivity in all of our spaces.
Yoga teaches us that we are all one.
We are all from the same energy and light source yet shine in our own unique ways. As a whole, we come from different backgrounds, have different physical features, and our stories are all not the same. However, we are all on the same journey, at different points in time learning our way back to our true Self. At NYS, no matter the differences, our community is one.
Our company’s mission is to create spaces that support human development, designed to empower the human spirit. We positively affect the lives and well-being of the people in our community and want to be the premier provider of yoga and wellness services in the communities we serve. We realize that when any one person is inspired to embrace their own unique purpose, we collectively reap the benefits.
Unfortunately, not everyone feels comfortable practicing yoga or entering a yoga studio.
The media at large has offered us images of yoga that rarely include photos of different-sized people, different-colored people, and different genders.
It is hard to feel included which is why we strive to embrace diversity and remind students that “you belong here” with an actual sign in our studio’s space at Power Nectar Yoga.
Here are three ways Nectar Yoga Studios embraces diversity.
Open to everyone and tailored to students new to the practice. You have to start somewhere! We want everyone to feel comfortable wherever you are in your yoga practice, especially when just getting started. In rookie vinyasa classes, we encourage the use of props, questions asked, and requests that better serve you. Whether you’ve been practicing yoga for 20 years, or it is your first day ever, you will not feel out of place. We are yoga without attitude.
Mindfulness in yoga is especially important in the words we choose to say. It is important to us that we avoid language that perpetuates stereotypes or that may be offensive. On and off the mat, this is essential to making everyone feel like they belong despite not looking or being a certain way. There is a yogic guideline that explains how powerful being impeccable with the word can be and for that, at Nectar Yoga we will always speak from a place of love and not fear.
Yoga is a practice that everyone can do but that is not what everyone believes. Sometimes you just need to meet people where they are, be kind, be compassionate, and be an example of the power of this practice. As community coordinator, I see first hand the importance of having like-minded people around to support and grow together. I am also a proud Hispanic, Black, and Filipino young woman who has always stood out and felt like I never really belonged. However, at Nectar Yoga studios I am always welcomed with encouragement and warmly embraced.
Anything that does not challenge us, will not change us. We hope to meet you soon!