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Urban Ashtangi : Issac Lee

Every student chances upon their practice in various ways at different stages of their life. 

For Issac, he fumbled onto yoga by attending a Vinyasa Yoga at the gym as an alternative to HIIT workout sessions. With further investigation, he chanced upon Ashtanga Yoga and was attracted to the beauty of the movements in silence.

Issac’s enthusiasm to learn the practice can be felt miles away! It is easy to tell if Issac had a good or bad day before coming to class. Regardless he dived into the practice as soon as he rolled out his mat. Dealing with an injury through the practice also helped him understand his inner self.

1. How did yoga enter your life?

I was lucky to attend an introductory workshop just before the circuit breaker kicked in. With the gyms closed during the CB period, I was doing home practice and continued regularly since.

2. What interests you most about the practice / learning process?

I like the fact that the sequence progresses poses in that at the earlier part of the sequence is a preparation to challenging poses in the later part of the sequence.

For example, I learnt that being able to bring your right shoulder closer to your left knee in Parivrtta Parsvakonasana will help you to bind in Marichyasana D later on.

Some people find following a set sequence is rigid and boring but if you let yourself benefit from the system, you will see progress.

My hamstrings have always been tight so any pose that emphasizes that is a struggle. Wait, isn’t that the whole primary series?

3. What would you hope to gain for yourself from the practice that you have invested time and effort in ?

To understand my body better, its idiosyncrasies and mentally as well; the whole story and babble in my mind that keeps talking to itself.  But most important, it is what you put into practice. I also hope to have an active body that ages well so I wouldn’t be a burden to anyone as I get older.

4. How have you evolved as a person today?

2016 was a year of intense angst. It was when I searched out meditation and stopped alcoholic beverages. I don’t know why I waited so long before starting yoga in 2020 and making vegetarian a large part (though not completely) of my diet, but I am glad I did.

5. Practicing yoga has allowed me to work through uncertainties and discomforts. 

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