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Townie Profiles – Stephen & Maria

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Couples who sweat together, stay together. The saying must be true because we see it at all of our studios– partners practicing together, evolving together, and showing up for each other and themselves. Preston regulars, Maria and Stephen, share some of their yoga journey with us illustrating exactly why we think they’re such a #powercouple.

Why did you start doing yoga?

Maria: I had hopes of becoming more flexible and doing fancy handstands and backbends one day. Little did I know then how yoga would eventually influence by life beyond achieving Instagram-worthy postures.

Stephen: Like many, I started yoga to stretch more.

What’s a yoga accomplishment you’re most proud of?

M: What came to mind first was the Yogatown 30 day challenge this past April that Steve and I achieved. It was a busy month trying to balance full-time work on top of the 30 day challenge and also raise awareness and funds for Parkinson’s awareness month through Steve’s initiative “Pies for Parkinsons”. We came out of that month feeling a combination of exhausted, accomplished, and balanced. Looking back, dedicating one hour every day to ourselves through our yoga practice was definitely a large factor in helping us achieve our goals.

S: The yoga accomplishment I am most proud of is getting my mom into yoga. She practices weekly!

Why Yogatown?

M/S: We initially joined Yogatown when we moved to Little Italy. We were looking for a place to practice within close proximity and thought this studio would be perfect. We made our way over one winter evening and after that first class, we both exchanged a look with each other knowing that this would be our yoga home. As we slowly attended more frequently and explored the variety of classes Yogatown offered, we fell in love with the community, the friendly staff, the good vibes, and felt that there is truly a class for everyone or for what your body and mind need that day.

What does the word Townie, or being part of this community, mean to you?

M: It creates a sense of identity for me to be part of this great community. It means the ability of uniting together in our yoga practice and coming together in one space despite our different personal goals.

S: I’ve been part of a few yoga communities/studios, and I think what makes being a Townie unique is the identity the name holds. In my opinion, none of the other studios I’ve been a part of have had this “identity”. It’s a term that embraces the culture of Yogatown and brings together a community of yogis.

We believe that yoga is about so much more than being bendy. What does yoga mean to you? Has it changed since you started practicing?

M: My outlook on yoga has certainly changed since I started practicing. Now I see yoga as more than being flexible and achieving fancy poses. More often than not, I feel the benefits of yoga

through the journey to reach that certain pose and this is a mindset I have carried to my every day life off the mat – that it is often about enjoying the journey and little things rather than fixating on the destination because it is within these moments when we can grow and build strength knowing we can be perfectly imperfect.

Yoga is a place of healing where I can come home to myself away from the business of our fast-paced world today. The mindfulness and awareness that yoga has given me is something I can apply off the mat to help me cope with every day challenges and put things into perspective. Through my most difficult times, I have always returned to this practice to regain balance in my body, mind and spirit.

S: To go full circle, I was hoping that stretching would help with some of my lingering soccer injuries! Not only did the start of my yoga practice help realign my body, it also helped me in so many other ways. To me, yoga is balance. It’s where I go to reset. It’s why I fall asleep easily at night. It’s why I listen during conversation, and not just wait for my turn to speak. It’s why I’m productive at work. It’s why I can still play soccer. I started yoga because I needed to stretch more, I stayed because of the endless amounts of benefits.

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