Letizia, in addition to your yoga practice, what else do you enjoy?
I enjoy reading, walking by the seashore, going to the Opera or the Symphony, enjoying my family and loved ones, anything that is good for the soul and mind.
Tell us about your yoga journey.
In November 2012 I moved to the Bay Area for I got a promotion (from my job) in the heart of San Francisco. I have always had interest in yoga and noticed there was a yoga studio near my house. So, in February 2013 I decided to try it out and fall in love with Bikram yoga. I have been going 5 to 6 times since.
What are the physical things you get from yoga?
The mind-body practice is frequently touted for its ability to reduce stress and boost well-being, but it also offers wide-ranging physical health benefits that rival other forms of exercise. In my personal experience, the benefits I obtain by practicing yoga are grouped into three categories-physiological, psychological, biochemical effects.
How has yoga impacted your life?
My yoga practice helps me to physically be able to feel balance. Whether it is through a series of balance enhancing postures on the legs, hands, arms and feet or performing a series of postures to work and evenly stretch and strengthen each side of the body equally, my body’s balance is physically challenged each time that I step onto my mat. Physical balance is extremely important. Maintaining balance and equilibrium prevents falls from happening.
My practice also challenges my mental and emotional balance. Often while practicing certain physical balance postures while in class, my mind and my muscles are screaming all sorts of different things at me. I have to challenge myself clear all of that away and remain steady & poised.
This mental and emotional balance that I practice while ON my yoga mat transfers directly to my everyday life. My brain as well as my muscles have become used to and expectant of challenges both physical and mental, therefore it is much easier to maintain a steady outlook when any adversity arises in my life.
What advice do you have for the new students?
Stay flexible! Be willing to leave out aspects of fears, and step by step as you gain confidence, you will be more balance and focus during your yoga practice and into your life as well. It’s okay to back up, laugh at yourself, be compassionate and acknowledge your mistake, and move on.