Nikki Costello on the healing powers of Iyengar Yoga

Namaste! Welcome! My name is Nikki Costello. It is a pleasure to meet you. I am a new teacher on Glo, and have been a student of yoga for 27 years. 

Early on, I enthusiastically practiced yoga, thriving on the challenge, the rigor, and the purifying sweat. I experienced feelings of elation and joy as I encountered positive changes in my body (especially the benefits of healing from a knee surgery), and a new zest for life. This steady and continuous engagement moved me organically toward teaching yoga, and I was fortunate that my commitment was inspired, clear, and full of purpose. 

When I was first introduced to Iyengar Yoga, I discovered something wonderful was happening. I wanted to learn more. I was not satisfied with just doing yoga, I wanted to know the ‘how’s and why’s’ and became interested in the whole subject—physically, emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually.

I would like to share three reasons why I chose Iyengar Yoga as my path of practice and teaching and hope that it might inspire you to give it a try for yourself. 

1. Self-inquiry: Iyengar Yoga kindles a passion for learning and exploration, while simultaneously cultivating a path of insight. 

As a beginner to yoga, one may believe that it takes years to make progress, and while in some ways this may be true of depth, I have witnessed (both in myself and in students) that changes happen quite quickly. This is because the method is intelligent, profound, and incredibly effective in communicating complex ideas through simple language which allows the body and mind to be transformed together.

2. Community: Iyengar Yoga is built on the teacher-student relationship formed and sustained over many years. 

An Iyengar student is supported by a wise, generous, and deeply committed community. When I began studying Iyengar Yoga, I was inspired by students who had been practicing for decades. When I observed people of all ages and abilities engaging in yoga, it demonstrated not only the physical benefits like strength and elegance in movement, but also, the possibility for continued growth and well-being over time. I was able to ask questions, receive guidance, and move forward with confidence.

3. Right Action: Iyengar Yoga is an embodied practice for living an awakened life.

This practice has taught me how to effectively care for myself in all circumstances and phases of life by fostering qualities of perseverance, courage, compassion, kindness, humility, and vulnerability. Yoga philosophy is not a theoretical subject. It is a discipline by which practice and repetition gradually cultivate positive human behaviours. These virtues make yoga a practical subject for right action in the world.

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