trailer park yoga

with 9 comments

I went to my very first yoga class today, with my friend who is a teeny bit of a fanatic about it. She’s very convincing about things – she got me to try some salad with barley in it once – and after reading about her adventures in Colorado yogaland, I was ready to try it.

In the interest of honesty I should tell you that I had a bit of a chip on my shoulder to start with. This yoga class – which is offered free, twice a week – takes place at a church here in town. Not the church I work at. Not a church I could see myself going to anytime soon. There’s a huge church in a neighboring town that Bryan likes to refer to as Six Flags Over Jesus, and while this particular church isn’t quite as large as that church, it could easily be the Dollywood of the local church scene. We get cards from them every so often, inviting us to a Christmas extravaganza or an Easter spectacle, usually involving a dramatic production paired with a carnival type thing going on outside, complete with rides and XBox giveaways.

It’s – how do I say – a little too WalMart Supercenter for me.

All this profound opinionatedness is based solely on those sporadic postcards, and my keen observations on the two times I had been inside the building, both times for community events that the church had hosted. Their building was bigger than ours, and they obviously had a lot more money to spend on all the things that go inside it than we do.

Not that I’ve thought about it a whole lot. Really.

Anyway, I go into class and as it turns out, the instructor is really nice. Really really nice. Nice enough that you sorta don’t even hate her for being really tall and skinny and pretty (that’s NOT all yoga. Some things just have to be chalked up to great genetics).

And perky. About every minute and a half, she would say my name in class, in a very cheery way, just to make sure I was getting it. The first time she said it – Sarabeth! – she scared me and I kind of fell over. Except that I was already on the ground.

This became a pattern. Sarabeth! we are going to start with a side stretch…Sarabeth! don’t worry if you fall off your bench, we all have…Sarabeth! you may actually die while attempting this next series…

Perky, very perky. And also very kind. She would say things like, that’s ok, just do what you can and beautiful, you’re doing great and you are enjoying this stretch of your lower back / quad muscle / insert any random body part here. These types of encouragements (or, let’s face it, flat out lies) are needed when you feel as though your body is about to betray you by throwing you face first onto the floor.

By the time we were done, I really liked her and I liked the class – this person who was a member of the superficial supercenter church. The same church which allowed us to use their room and yoga mats, blankets, blocks, benches, and bolsters. For free. That’s right, the church bought all that equipment so that this woman could teach her classes to people like me.

In related news, this evening I went to pick up my own new-to-me yoga mat from a fellow freecycler whose husband wasn’t using it anymore. I drove out to get it and ended up in the trailer park where they live.

Really? I thought. Yoga enthusiast lives in a trailer park? I would have never put those two things together.

It’s embarrassing, really, when I run up against these prejudices. Twice in one day – on both ends of the spectrum – my narrow view of the world, of trailer parks, of big flashy churches – got called out of hiding. These are not things I think about with my logical self, they are ugly, petty, jealous, prideful things that lurk in the corners of my heart. And they’re wrong. It’s not like I enjoy admitting this stuff, but my hope is – always – that if I can say this stuff out loud, pin it down on a page, that it won’t be inside me as much anymore.

Or any of us.


Written by Sarabeth :: the dramatic

September 4, 2007 at 11:20 pm

Posted in church, funny, healthy, life

9 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. fanatic?? me??

    i can’t imagine what you’re talking about.

    no more barley for you.

    alison chino

    September 5, 2007 at 6:43 am

  2. The one time I miss yoga….


    September 5, 2007 at 10:36 am

  3. still working on walkin the #1 boy to school everyday- couldn’t imagine actually DOING yoga– you gals are just trendy!


    September 6, 2007 at 12:32 pm

  4. i’m not sure if what I was doing could actually be called yoga…


    September 6, 2007 at 4:17 pm

  5. we all have preconceived notions about things. Its a humbling experience when these notions prove to be wrong and we find ourselves admitting them.
    But admitting that we may be wrong is a step forwards.


    September 7, 2007 at 11:40 pm

  6. […] of their own cable mishaps. I can’t take it anymore. So, on Tuesday morning, I skipped my wonderful free yoga class, came to work instead, and blogged. And didn’t count it as work. I think the fact that I gave […]

  7. […] of their own cable mishaps. I can’t take it anymore. So, on Tuesday morning, I skipped my wonderful free yoga class, came to work instead, and blogged. And didn’t count it as work. I think the fact that I gave […]

  8. I’m amused. Did you know that Susan Powter developed an entire yoga program (and a video) called Trailer Park Yoga? She actually got a trailer, went to trailer parks, and taught it — to bring fitness to women who really need it.

    I am incredibly fortunate to live in the city where Susan now lives, and to be studying the latest version of Trailer Park Yoga with her three times a week.

    Karen G Anderson

    July 17, 2009 at 1:15 pm

  9. Very nicely said.I came across your blog from Yahoo and enjoyed it tremendously. Have you been writing for long?Just the other day I recently developed a blog myself and its been a enjoyable process. I’ve met some interesting friends since then although it can be a real chore at times! Oh well, many thanks for your post!

    top exercise videos

    January 8, 2010 at 6:23 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: