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Personal Trainer Tries Yoga: Part 1

Updated: Jan 15, 2022

I’m about to try yoga and I’m terrified.

Ok, maybe terrified is an exaggeration, but I’m certainly nervous. Undoubtedly hesitant. And definitely intimidated. It is a brand new experience for me and I don’t typically enjoy doing things I’m not good at.

Hi. I’m Mark. I’ve been a personal trainer and I love lifting heavy things. I typically lift weights about three times per week and have done this (with varying degrees of consistency) for many years.

However, I’m not a spring chicken anymore. I’m fast approaching my 45th birthday and my body doesn’t exactly move like it used to. My joints are stiff and my flexibility is lacking so I’ve decided to give yoga a shot. Not only do I think yoga could help me to gain back some flexibility, but I think the mindfulness practices could be helpful as well.

With that said, I do have many reservations.

First of all, I’m a guy. And yoga, as far as I’m aware, is something that is heavily slanted towards female participation. Recent statistics suggest that only 18 percent of yogis are male so I’ll definitely be in the minority. This probably shouldn’t really concern me, but I’d be lying if I said it didn’t.

Secondly, I’ve been doing personal training for over 20 years. Being on the gym floor is second nature to me and I’m 100% comfortable around free weights like barbells and dumbbells. I’m an expert in this area and it is comfortable for me. Being inside of a studio with soft music, yoga mats, and a serene environment is completely foreign to me. In this area I am not an expert, and it makes me feel pretty intimidated and uncomfortable.

In any case, what I have realized is that if I’m having these reservations, other people considering taking yoga are probably having them too.

What do I wear?

Do I need my own mat?

Where do I stand in the class?

Am I taking someone’s usual spot?

Who is Lulu and why does she like lemons?

I also realized that people who are already taking yoga might feel similarly about the idea of including strength training. So how can I encourage them to step out of their comfort zone when I’m not willing to do the same?

So…I’ve decided to commit to taking at least one yoga class per week for the next few months. Being that I work in a gym that offers yoga, I’ll be doing all of my classes at Heron Creek Yoga & Fitness in Ancaster, Ontario.

Further to that, I'm going to document my fears, questions, experiences, and lessons learned as I venture into the world of yoga.

I invite you to join me in the coming weeks as I try to put aside my reservations and step into the world of yoga.

Mark Young, BKin, is Head Personal Trainer at Heron Creek Yoga & Fitness, a locally-owned health facility located in the Ancaster Rotary Centre at 385 Jerseyville Rd W. Contact us for top quality professional care at our 10,000 sq ft facility which has plenty of equipment, a dedicated Yoga studio, and much more. Email:, phone 905-648-4571, ig @heroncreekyogaandfitness, fb heroncreekyogaandfitness

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