Why Yoga? Why Yoga Love?

I often get asked the question how I got into yoga. Why yoga? And why Yoga Love? Well here is the story of my journey to yoga and eventually owning a yoga studio in Highland, Maryland. 

 

I had been in the fitness industry for about 9 years as a personal trainer and a group fitness instructor before yoga. In the early days of my fitness journey, I never thought yoga would be such a huge part of my life. At that time, I didn't understand what yoga truly had to offer. I only saw it for the physical side and nothing else. Then, I took my first yoga class. After, I felt completely elated, like I was floating. I didn’t know why, I just knew I wanted to feel like this again and share it with every person I knew.  So I took more and more classes and it eventually became a part of my life.  After a while, I decided to go through a 500-hour yoga teacher training with Sid Yoga, the studio I had been attending. During training, I told my group that I wanted to open up my own yoga studio in Howard County. I didn’t know why, I just knew that it’s what I wanted to do.

 

I found that teacher training pushed my limits and opened me up in so many ways I never thought possible. I grew to understand myself on a deeper level, to see the things I wanted to change and believe in the parts I never believed in before. I learned that yoga is much more than what we see in pictures and videos. It is much deeper than the physical side.  I once thought that yoga was mastering postures, mediation and getting really bendy. So I focused on that and would leave class and be a complete jerk.  Short tempered, jealous, and insecure; however, I could chatarunga like a mother! Through yoga teacher training, I learned the yoga is much greater than the physical. It's about letting go of comparison, living from the heart and not letting the past cloud the future. It's about making mistakes, learning from them and letting go of the need to be perfect. It's about growing and being the best today, with no thought of tomorrow or what happened yesterday. I learned that we all have the power to be and do this and it can exist on and off the mat. Standing on your head isn't the key. Some days you fall. Being good at yoga means that's ok. It’s about getting back up and trying again, laughing at mistakes and moving forward. That is why I love yoga and that is what I wanted to share.  

 

I finished up training and began teaching wherever I could.  I felt lost in my life outside of teaching and knew I had to make a change. I began teaching at The Still Point Yoga in Highland, Maryland.  I loved teaching at the studio and I loved the community of students. After teaching for about a year, I found out that the studio was for sale.  I approached the owners and with their help, the help of my family and the landlord, they made my dream of owning a yoga studio become a reality. I knew that I wanted to be able to bring yoga to the people of Highland, Clarksville, Olney, Fulton Columbia and Ellicott City.  I love the idea of helping every person realize his/her fullest potential. That is what I strive to share with people at Yoga Love, the true definition of yoga that I learned through training. I wanted to bring a space that combines my love for yoga with a love for community.  A yoga studio where people can come in messy, tired, sad, and uninspired and know that is ok. A yoga studio where the community of instructors and students are there to support one another. The road to Yoga Love’s 4th birthday has not always been smooth. I have made my fair share of mistakes, poor business decisions, foolish choices and taken my hits. I understand that it’s part of business, its part of growth and its part of being able to do what you love every day. A small price to pay for waking up and living my dream. I love yoga so much that there is nothing I would rather do. I love seeing the best in people and to be able to show them it can be their reality. There is nothing else I’d rather do. And that’s why yoga and that’s why Yoga Love.

Ali Dietrich