My Senior Moment: A Yoga Competition Journey (Part 2) )

Part 2: My Senior Moment: My First Competition(s)

How can I describe the excitement and joy as well as the calm and self-realization of being on stage? I was excited for my first competition, but I was not nervous. I asked myself why. I realized that I was looking forward to showing the world what I could do with my body and mind and soul as a 55-year old “senior.”

Arriving at the competition venue with my crew from Pure Om Fairfax, I wondered what the day would entail. I soon learned that it was all about supporting your fellow competitors. Everyone I met that day was so positive and encouraging. Competition is not a “me versus you” thing; it is about encouraging your friends to do their best. I went to competition with friends from my studio, and I left with new friends from all over the Mid-Atlantic Region.

Those three minutes on stage are forever yet they went by in a flash. My 3-minute routine was perfect because it was perfectly me at that point in time. I exited the stage feeling euphoric! I soon learned that I was ranked first for Virginia Senior Women, so that meant an automatic invitation to Nationals in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

The experience of taking the stage for the 2016 USA Yoga Nationals was incredibly exciting! Lessons learned from Regionals and regular practice at my home studio helped me improve my score tremendously. Though I did not make it to Finals, I enjoyed each and every special moment. It was especially empowering to bond with my fellow senior women and share our experiences as “ageless” yogis.

Recently, I found these notes that I jotted down as I left Wyoming:

“I demonstrated the yoga I can do with my body, breath and mind today at age 55. I supported my yoga community, especially my fellow seniors. I helped grow the wider USA Yoga community by spreading the beautiful message of yoga asanas.”

The joy of competition has continued into the 2017 season. It is not about ego, but about pride in our yoga family. My training partner and coach, USA Yoga Board Member Thomas Forbang, and I worked together to support a strong team from our studio, Pure Om Fairfax. Our entire team qualified for Super Regionals in Columbus, OH at the Arnold Sports Festival. All three of the seniors on the Pure Om Fairfax team are now heading to Nationals at the State Games of Michigan this August.

I am looking forward to Nationals to proudly and lovingly share with the world what a 56-year-old yogi can do. I feel stronger and more flexible than ever before. As Bishnu Ghosh said, “Yoga maintains youth.” I totally agree! #yogaisageless

Photo: Senior women backstage at 2016 Nationals competition in Jackson Hole, WY.

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