This week my Kick Asana Yoga Instructor Interview Series is coming to a close, but the last is certainly not least.
Last year I was really stressed out and unhappy at my old job. I had been working there for a long time and felt smothered by my workload and the fact that I had no room for advancement. Also during that time I was looking into ballet classes for Betty and it was during that search that I discovered a hidden gem of a yoga class, located at one of our local dance studios. The class fit right into my lunch break and it became essential to my routine twice a week. Without that class I probably would have cracked. Instead I became more positive and willing to change my situation. I got a new job and while I was sad to leave a couple of coworkers behind, I was even more sad that I wouldn’t be able to visit my lunchtime yoga class anymore.
One of the teachers I had at that studio was Molly Jean. She was actually the teacher on the day where I had a huge emotional breakthrough in class. (The story of that is here.) Although I only practiced with her for a short time, she had such a big impact on me during a stage in my life where I was feeling pretty beaten up. I’m so thankful for her kindness and I was so thrilled when she agreed to be a part of my blog.
Welcome, Molly Jean Kirkup!
Salt: How long have you been practicing yoga and how did you get started?
Molly Jean: A consistent practice developed almost 4 years ago. After I graduated college I was searching a way to move, stretch and strengthen. I found a lot more than that!
Salt: What types of yoga do you teach?
Molly Jean: Vinyasa Yoga.
Salt: What do you enjoy most about this style?
Molly Jean: I love the connection of breath and movement and the flow, the transitions – the places in between the postures and how those spaces are just as valuable as the posture itself.
Salt: What do you love most about teaching?
Molly Jean: The amazing, inspirational people you meet. I’m not talking yoga celebs, I mean the people on the mat, the community you find.
Salt: What has yoga done for you as a person?
Molly Jean: What started as a way to keep my body healthy has done even more for my mental health. Yoga, especially the meditative aspects, have helped ease my anxiety. I find myself more mindful in my everyday life which helps create a sense of ease as I go about my day. The asana and flow of poses are the first step of an incredible inward journey. When my body gets to move I find it easier to slow down, quiet my thoughts and truly experience the moment. It’s not perfect, it is absolutely a practice but a really beautiful practice that I hope to enjoy my whole life.
Salt: In your opinion, what are the greatest health benefits of a regular yoga practice?
Molly Jean: There are no doubt many physical benefits including over-all strength and flexibility but the practice moves past that into a mindfulness present your daily life; what goes in your body, how you treat it off the mat etc. From a physical practice it transforms into a practice, where you feel strong and flexible mentally and emotionally as well.
Salt: Do you have any words of advice or encouragement for someone who may have been contemplating trying out a class?
Molly Jean: I would suggest trying a few different styles and even a few different teachers before making up your mind about anything. There are quite a few styles of yoga and one may “click” more than another.
I feel really fortunate to have “clicked” with so many of my instructors and that I can count them as my friends! Thank you so much to everyone who has been reading and leaving sweet comments during the Kick Asana series. It was such an enlightening experience for me to hear these responses and I hope that it opened your mind and inspired you as well. ❤
Has a particular fitness instructor or class ever helped you through a difficult time in your life?
I hope everyone has a wonderful Thursday!
Also don’t forget to enter the Lily Trotters compression socks giveaway! Details can be found here!