- Lucy Kalantari
This Bodhisattva Yoga Blog series spotlights our rock star body of practitioners, for whom we are proud. The series is intended to inspire, thought-provoke and nurture the growing, friendly Bodhisattva Yoga community. When you see a featured Bodhisattva Yogin in class, say hello!
This month’s profiled BY rock star practitioner, Lucy, originally worked with me (Vivekan) over 10-years ago, when I was still teaching in gyms. Even then, she showed an aptitude to do well as a practitioner. Fortunately, although my development of the Bodhisattva YogaTM system was at its infancy, Lucy recalled some good instruction qualities of mine and sought me out, thus starting her work at Bodhisattva Yoga two years ago.
Lucy is a genuine BY rock star. Not only has she attended multiple yoga retreats with me, she has participated in our workshops, and has even gained invitation into the Sati (Advanced invitation-only) class; and, she is a talented and engaging musician songwriter.
Now, Lucy’s pregnant. She’s so interested in her practice she has even scheduled several privates with Jess to personally learn modifications necessary to incorporate in a class setting, etc. As a result she is still rockin’ her practice; and, most importantly, she’s mindful to work at her edge. Lastly, she is another example of why BY’s practitioners are so cool – she is friendly and genuine. Keep up the great work, Lucy!
Let’s give it up for Lucy! Whether or not you’ve met the friendly, consistent aspiring yogini yet, give her a shout the next time you see her in class.
1. Bodhisattva Yoga: What is your age? Your profession and other life interests?
Lucy Kalantari: I’m 36 and am a singer, songwriter & producer. Other interests include swimming, reading comic books, vampires and other nerdy sci-fi things.
2. BY: How often do you practice at Bodhisattva Yoga on a weekly basis?
LK: I always aim for three times a week. Sometimes, life happens and can only do two, so I try to fit in a micro-practice at home. Anything to encourage movement.
3. BY: What classes do you take on a weekly basis?
LK: On Mondays, I take the Asana, Pranayama, Dharana class. It’s my favorite one, by far. It sets the tone for the week and jumpstarts my body and mind for whatever I need to tackle. Then either the Dhana class on Wednesday nights, or the Virya on Thursday mornings. And the Shila class on Saturdays. I was taking the Sati class for a little while until I got pregnant, then I figured I’ll keep my practice strong and steady up to the Shila level and I’ll go back to that class when I feel my body is ready to take the next leap again.
4. BY: Where do you live and what is your trip like to and from Bodhisattva Yoga?
LK: I live 3 stops away on the F train which requires me to leave the house about 30 minutes before class time. I’ve only had two incidents in the past two years where the train didn’t cooperate, (Emergency brake engaged in the train ahead! or, Sick passenger!) That’s a good time to practice Kshanti–patience.
5. BY: What is it that you like about practicing at Bodhisattva Yoga?
LK: I truly appreciate that BY not only focuses on proper posture and breathing during your asana practice, but they also place special emphasis on what’s going on with the mind and spirit. Even their class names: Patience (Kshanti), Enthusiastic Effort (Virya), Discipline (Shila) and Mindfulness (Sati) list out an on-going mindset for life. It takes practice, but next thing you know, you’re incorporating all of these things into your daily routine.
6. BY: What is it that you like about your fellow practitioners at Bodhisattva Yoga?
LK: I LOVE the enthusiasm and encouragement I always feel around other BY practitioners. It’s particularly boosted after going on a retreat together, there’s a strong sense of camaraderie between us. We go through certain experiences together, and it feels like family.
7. BY: What is it that you’ve mentally/physically/emotionally experienced as a result of practicing at Bodhisattva Yoga?
LK: That’s a loaded question. In a nutshell, it’s helped me handle health issues, my pregnancy and the details of life. I initially reached out to BY after having been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and other physical ailments. Both he [Vivekan] and Jess welcomed me and made me feel at ease with reminders to “pull back” and do a more remedial pose if something feels unattainable at that moment. Or if I’m feeling too fatigued, take a child’s pose. They put an emphasis on listening and being kind to one’s body, but also remind us not to fall into laziness either. This, I realize, is a life lesson; one I get to practice everyday.
These lessons have also echoed throughout my pregnancy. I can’t imagine what this pregnancy would have been like without BY and I’m grateful to say that I don’t have to. So far, at 30 weeks, I have been able to keep up my practice and keep my body strong. Meditation has become part of my everyday life, thanks to the workshops I’ve attended at BY. I can feel my baby involved in the whole process: how he moves around when we chant “ohm”; how steady he is while I’m practicing asana flows; and his little wiggle when we go into shavasana, as if to say, “Aww…that’s it? We’re done?”