(65) 6221 6683 / 8268 2880 (English) / 9880 1622 (中文)



Athena: My journey with yoga – My first post!

This is the start of journaling my very special journey, with my spiritual self and the people
around me.

To really trace back to when I first started my journey with yoga, it would be back to when
I was 11 years old. Not many people know that I have started doing yoga so many years
ago, because I did not convey this part of my life to them. It has been such a long but
uneventful journey with yoga, not until recent years.

My mom got diagnosed with cancer in 2004, when I was in Primary 4. I was young and did
not know much then, but knew that my mom was sick. She recovered, thankfully and a
year later, she started to practise yoga after hearing about the benefits of it. I had my very
first class when my mom asked for me to follow her to a private class at a teacher’s home
in Bukit Timah. She already had attended a few classes then and wanted me to try it out
too. Can’t remember much about my first class, other than wearing long tights and
sweating in a very tiny room with 4 other students and that I had to address the teacher
by Ms Stoney.

Eventually, I started making adult friends because of the age group the students were in. I
even went for a retreat in Nepal with my mom a year later with Ms Stoney and a group of
yoga students. After the cancer ordeal my mom went through, going for Yoga was a way
to spend more time with her. I continued for a year but was mostly going through motion
and poses.

Another 3 yoga teachers later and practising at a Condominium to out in the open at
MacRitchie Park, I injured my knee while training for a National Floorball competition. I
decided to stop yoga then because I experienced a sharp pain with stretching my legs
during downward facing dog and couldn’t stand on one leg because of the pressure on my
knee. I stopped practising for almost 2 years, until I headed to Canada for my school’s
exchange program in 2015.

During my 6 months in Vancouver, I was looking for activities to feed my exercise regime. I
signed up for the gym at school (so so cheap), tried to do running outdoors (but it was so
so cold by the sea) and eventually chanced upon hot yoga at The Hot Box Yoga in school.
Best decision I have ever made! I signed up for their 1 month unlimited package to try out
and eventually continued to practise until I came back to Singapore.

A few memorable things I recall about my yoga lessons there:

1) All teachers took time before or after class to share a piece of advice from a book they
read or a situation that happened recently, and how it can translate to our practise on the
mat or in life. I felt that I could always relate in one way or another.

2) They had power yoga with weights!!! I was so intrigued. One of my favourite classes

3) I started to notice how yoga had changed my body physically when I practised every
day. Simple twisted chair poses were making my core so strong.

4) I really treasured the special moments I had with yoga. My commitment to wake up
every day at 640am to make it for the 7am classes was something I would never have
done. I was always a sleep > anything else person.

5) Last but not least, I started to see how lessons learnt on the mat could always translate
to how I treat myself, the people around me and the situation I am in in real life. I actually
felt enlightened.

When I came back to Singapore in 2016, I continued my lessons with my previous teacher
before I switched to Yoga Lab after I started working. I finally decided to take YTT at Yoga
Mandala after a few years of thinking about sharing this practise with many others. It has
benefitted me so much in shaping my approach to life and to stay true to myself. I wanted
to share my practise with people and also challenge myself.

What a long journey it has been but YTT at Yoga Mandala is just the beginning….

Feb’20 Weekend YTT