Yoga Story of the Month with Kim Scullion
You may recognize Kim, she’s one of our lovely front-desk employees. Today, she shares her story – how she came to yoga and lessons learned along the way.
What first brought you to yoga?
In 2001 a friend in Chicago invited me to a heated yoga class. Never one for sports, I liked that I got an incredible workout without having to compete. I was in my own space, on a matt, my heart was pumping, sweat was pouring out of me and I felt high on life after the class. The non-competitive environment resonated with me. After class, everyone in the room was smiling at each other, happy to be there, and I knew I would return to yoga. I haven’t always been the dedicated yogini that I am today, I took long breaks at times, but I’ve always been drawn back to the healing and empowering practice.
What do you love most about yoga?
There are physical benefits that come with a regular practice, but what is most valuable, personally, is peace of mind. When I arrive to a class, I still have the day’s concerns in my thoughts. Even after years of practice, at the beginning of every class I wonder: will yoga work this time? Will my mind calm despite all that I am dealing with today? Each time the answer is, miraculously, “Yes!” At the end of class I take a moment to notice the difference and be grateful for the amazing power that my yoga practice has in creating contentment and happiness. Yoga releases the nagging desire to change things. After an hour on the matt I can reconnect with the reality that everything is perfect, just the way it is.
What is your favorite pose and why?
Urdhva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow or Wheel Pose). I loved doing this pose when I was a girl. Of course, when I was a child, I didn’t know it was a yoga pose, I just called it “backbend.” During Yoga Teacher Training, I was hanging out with a few classmates during a break and I wondered if I could still do the pose. With the support of my fellow yogis and some muscle memory, I went right into it. Our bodies are amazing. Each time this pose comes up in class, there is always that second of wonder, “Can I still do the pose?” and each time that I can, I am so impressed and the times I can’t, it’s a great reminder that not every day is the same. Change is constant.
What do you do to stay inspired or motivated in your own practice?
I invite friends and my fiance to practice with me. Whether it’s taking a class with them or them allowing me to guide them in practice, having a community that practices together is very motivating. I’m noticing more friends finding interest in yoga and it’s many benefits. Witnessing yoga transform someone’s health and wellbeing keeps me very motivated to continue my own practice.
I first became a member of Pilgrimage in 2007/08 when the studio was one small room on the corner of 33rd and Adams, now know as the “East Room.” Some of my first teachers here were Blair, Linda and Leela. Looking back, those were some rough years in my history and although I never shared that with the instructors, or even said more than a quick, “Hello,” their classes were healing and certainly a factor in my choice to continue to practice with Pilgrimage seven years later.