Let Me Introduce You…

  • Sports   Friday, May 13, 2022   April Taylor

Yoga’s origins can be traced to India over 5,000 years ago and has been adopted by people all over the world. Yoga is an ancient practice focusing on breathing, strength and flexibility to boost physical and mental well-being. It is composed of a group of physical and spiritual practices. The main components of yoga are breathing and postures. A series of movements designed to increase strength and flexibility.

Why are so many people practicing this ancient art of meditation and exercise? 

Let's ask Lisa...

Lisa Stacy -- ESL teacher, Reiki practitioner and yoga instructor began her yoga journey 28 years ago after a back injury playing volleyball. Feeling a little intimidated, as one does when trying something new she entered her first class with Karen Zamaria and found the experience incredible and Karen set Lisa on a life-long path to health and serenity.

Lisa did her training with an Ayurveda doctor from India in Toronto before moving back to Stratford Ontario to raise her family and begin her career as yoga teacher, which was a change from modeling and DJ-ing and city life. 10 years later she is still teaching and helping people like me to be healthy physically and emotionally. 

Lisa works from several locations... Yoga Collective on Wellington St, The Yoga Chapel and Grassroots. In this new climate we find ourselves in Yoga studios are offering on-line classes which in a pleasant twist has made yoga more accessible. 

"Yoga has transformed me in many ways... It has made me more grounded and focused in my life. I’m also very in tune with my body now, using Yoga for medicinal purposes and for health promotion and illness prevention. Yoga also changed my life when I began teaching to people, knowing I passed on something so sacred to me, and knowing other people will be enjoying the benefits it’s provided to me.” says Lisa.

Teaching yoga to children has been one of the things Lisa has enjoyed, after having the opportunity to instruct in Nunavut to the First nations community and in other school boards. Imagine giving kids the tools to manage stress and anxiety at an early age would surely give kids an advantage in this crazy busy world that we all call home.

Lisa offers yoga and Reiki classes and private sessions as part of her Suntwine personal practice. She balances this with her employment at Wellspring Stratford Cancer Support Centre, where She is honoured to serve as Manager and provide yoga, meditation and Reiki to its remarkable members.

In 2019, she earned recognition as woman of the year for Health and Wellness at the Optimism Place Stratford Woman of the Year Awards. I can honestly say she deserved that award as she genuinely cares about her clients.

“I practice yoga daily, not only for physical exercise but for maintaining a balance in my life. Yoga to me is a preventative measure for good health, staying well mentally and physically while strengthening your inner and outer self,” she said.

The benefits of yoga are endless: reduced stress, better sleep, improved balance and strength, improved mobility, reduced muscle pain and joint pain, it reduces inflammation in the body and improves your heart and lungs, better posture, increases energy and improves your mood, and offers a connection to a wonderful and supportive community.

Sounds great, doesn't it? But I am not Flexible I can't turn myself into a pretzel... I am just an average 59-year old woman not a fit young woman who can stand on her head and contort her body into unimaginable poses, in fact I have arthritis and a few extra pounds and never had any athletic ability but... I love yoga. 

Yoga is for everyone, young, old, fit, unfit, strong, weak, healthy and unhealthy. Yoga is a practice, ever-changing and evolving with us throughout our lifetime. That is the beauty of it. I often arrive to my yoga class running straight from work with my mind full and busy. Five minutes into the practice I feel my mind to begin to slow down... then we do a series of poses and stretches and my mind is really settling down... then we end the class in meditation laying in the dark, completely at peace with the world. It's really an amazing thing.

You can follow Lisa Stacy on Facebook  and Instagram (Suntwine Yoga), and she also offers yoga and meditation videos on her YouTube channel (Lisa Stacey Suntwine Yoga). Her website is www.suntwine.com.

I strongly encourage you to look into this wonderful mind and body practice... do a little, do a lot. Suntwine Yoga classes incorporate meditation, relaxation, energy work, and poses that can be enjoyed by beginners or taken to higher skill level.  Give it a try, you'll be glad you did.