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Stretching out in the box

When I first began truly ‘caring’ for myself the objective was simple: lose the weight and become ‘healthy.’ At the time ‘healthy’ for me held the image of physical size and scale number. What I did not know and later came to learn was my mental health was just as critical (if not more so) in achieving optimum health.

Often times we are our own worst critics. Discounting compliments or positive affirmations with a brush off or ‘it’s really no big deal.’

As I began running in late 2010 I started to learn and understand why so many stay committed to such an activity. Thirty minutes in the morning, just me, the stars and God. The solidarity it allowed me as a working mom of two young children is somewhat indescribable. This was my time. Often I would pray, bang out big issues I had with myself, my spouse, my kids or life in general.

Once running goals started to seed in my head, that quiet/prayer time became somewhat altered and replaced by thoughts (pace, distance, stride, etcetera).

Recognizing a need for increased stretching and alternative movement I turned to friend and Koru Power Yoga Studio owner Korin Wallace. I had tried yoga before. I knew it was good for stretching. What I did not know or expect was the mental and personal growth it would take me through. The personal peace I would gain through 60 minutes in a hot room, listening to a Yogi.

Wallace, a Baptiste trained hot yoga teacher has a unique and loving connection with those who practice with her. She is constantly reminding her yogi’s that they are not at the gym. Comparison is the thief of all joy and to live and breathe in the now.

“The greatest benefits that have manifested as a result of a consistent yoga practice are empowerment in the areas of myself that are weak,” Wallace shared. “I struggle with self-acceptance, patience with others and living in the moment. Baptiste Power Yoga has offered me practical tools for self-study and encouragement in setting new intentions in these areas of weakness and the realization that living in these new intentions is a moment by moment choice.”

The Yogi began practicing Baptiste yoga in 2003 after being encouraged to try yoga by her boss.

“What prompted me to begin attending Baptiste style teacher training was this particular style of yoga practice challenged my body, mind and spirit,” she said. “The methodology asked me to begin looking at every area of my life and my behavior in it as a starting point to personal growth.

“Owning my own studio was a natural progression of me living my yoga practice off of my mat,” she continued. “It was an opportunity to step out of what was comfortable and into the unknown. It is there and only there where growth occurs.”

Her passion and commitment to personal growth and spreading her teachings has now taken her practice to a second Koru Power Yoga Studio in Turlock.

“I think one of the biggest misconceptions about yoga is that it is exercise,” Wallace stated. “While power yoga does embody every area of fitness, its true intention is for each practitioner to experience an awakening.

“What I love most about what I do is the opportunities I get to be with people, to share the reality of who I am with them.”

Personally, I could not be more grateful for not only this type of teaching, but this type of practice. Is my body stronger? Of course. But if being totally honest, my mind can now overcome the challenges I used to once tell myself were beyond my limits. That’s powerful stuff.

For more information or to locate classes with Koru Power Yoga Studio visit