Last week I went to a yoga workshop focused on inversions, and with a lot of help, managed to get into a headstand.
The class I attended was part of the Thick and Fit series, put on by Curve Appeal. I felt a lot more comfortable experimenting, trying, and failing in a room that was all plus sized bodies. I think that was ultimately what led to my willingness to try this. And to my succeeding.
I didn’t get up there on my own. First, I used blocks to stabilize my head and arms. Then once my hips were as high as possible, the instructors helped me get me legs up the rest of the way. They let go. While I was still sort of using the wall for balance, I was in my first headstand.
When I say first, by the way, I mean ever. In middle school I tried to do a tripod headstand and somehow ended up kicking myself in the face and making my nose bleed. So they kind of lost their appeal for awhile.
Like I said, being in a fat-positive space made a huge (lol) difference. In a mainstream class, often there aren’t other fatties present. I’m fine with my body as it is, but there’s a lot of baggage that shows up in a fitness setting. Experimenting becomes more fraught in these situations.
This class reinforced my desire to do teacher training. I was able to go upside down because I was in a supportive environment. Everyone should have that, and that’s what I would like to bring to the yoga world. If you want to do yoga, you should feel accepted and encouraged. Too many people have bad experiences because they don’t fit what a yogi “should” look like, or have a “yoga body.”
That’s nonsense. Your yoga body is whatever body you have while doing yoga.