I Interviewed A Certified Yoga Instructor
Start writing a post
Health and Wellness

I Interviewed A Certified Yoga Instructor, And It's Truly A Practice For Everyone

Chatting with my friend and newly-certified yoga instructor, Jaaie Varshney.

I Interviewed A Certified Yoga Instructor, And It's Truly A Practice For Everyone
Jaaie Varshney

The practice of yoga first originated in ancient India thousands of years ago and has a significant and deep history of spirituality and tradition. Through colonization and other events, the ideas of yoga made their way through the Western world in the 19th century and are still widely practiced (in some form or another) all over the world. Recently, I had the opportunity to interview one of my friends, Jaaie Varshney, who became a certified yoga instructor earlier this month, about the practice of yoga.

How long have you been practicing yoga? What inspired you to become a certified instructor? 

I've been doing it off and on since high school. I really loved the way it made me feel and the fact that it was really into my culture, but I had just never found the time to become an instructor before quarantine because it's a 200-hour commitment. For example, we had to spend at least 20 hours learning anatomy so that if someone comes into your class and has an injury you know how to accommodate them. We also focused a lot on meditation and spirituality, which I really appreciated, and we learned about all the asanas (yoga poses).

What are the internal and external benefits of practicing yoga? 

A lot of people see yoga as a form of working out but it's actually so much more than that. Internally, especially with meditation, it helps verify your goals, it improves your relationships with other people and it helps with measuring and assessing your emotions. And then there are external benefits, obviously, such as improving flexibility and becoming stronger, which is really important as well.

What is the overall purpose of yoga? What does it mean to you, personally? 

It depends. The stated goal of yoga, according to the fundamental texts from thousands of years ago was to know one's true self and to strip apart all the stories and expectations about yourself, which comes with meditation and asana practice. I think today a lot of people only see it as a form of exercise, which I don't agree with, but it's up to the individual to know how they want to use it. For me, the goal of yoga is to improve both my internal and external workings.

Do you have a favorite, or go-to, yoga flow? 

I like Vinyasa yoga a lot. It's a balance between being physically demanding but also being really calming mentally. If the flow is really intense, like power or Bikram yoga, it can take away from the mental part of it, so I enjoy doing anything that has the combination

Are there any common misconceptions about yoga? 

Yes! I could go on forever, but I think the most common one is something I alluded to earlier. Yoga is not just a workout and is not something only done by wealthy women in the west. It has deep roots in South Asian and today it's heavily culturally appropriated as many people do not acknowledge its roots. I don't want to gatekeep yoga, and I think everyone can do it of course. However, I just don't want there to be profit without understanding.

What advice would you give to someone who's just starting to practice yoga or someone who wants to try but is nervous? 

For someone who's just starting, I would tell them to not be afraid to challenge yourself. If you have the time to commit to yoga on a larger scale, then it's totally rewarding and you should do it! For someone who's nervous, there's a part of yoga called non-attachment where you let go of any expectations of what yoga is supposed to look like. For example, if you have any idea of what a handstand looks like, you should let that go. So, when you're trying to do one for the first time, it doesn't affect your process of learning. Anyone who's nervous, I think, should really try to embody that idea of non-attachment.

Report this Content

Planning Another Christmas Party

Don't just plan another plain party but get creative to have everyone wanting to come back next year!

Getty Famous

You know it's Christmas when the radio stations change to all of your favorite holiday tunes, the air is still, and stores have the best sales. With all my favorite things from Christmas happening my least favorite probably has to be when I have to go to another same old boring Christmas party that I get invited to every year. Here are some Christmas party ideas so that you won't have another sad Christmas party.

Keep Reading... Show less

High School Soccer is Wildly Important

For Young Players Who Want to Succeed at The Next Level

High School Soccer is Wildly Important

Whose choice is it? The parent? The player? There are a number of reasons that a kid may sit out of high school soccer, and to be completely honest; It is a huge mistake. High school soccer is the final piece in the puzzle that takes a player from above average or elite, to college ready by the end of their senior year. Every year thousands of talented athletes don't play for their high schools. Why though?

Keep Reading... Show less

8 Things That Should Be On Everyone's Holiday To-Do List

December is around the corner, are you ready?

8 Things That Should Be On Everyone's Holiday To-Do List

As they tend to say, its the most wonderful time of the year! People have begun to compile their Christmas to-do lists in anticipation for the season of sugarplums and gingerbread.

The history of the Christmas to-do lists goes back hundreds of years, almost as old as the holiday itself, however, people tend to fall out of this habit as they get older. This is unfortunate, as the theme of Christmas tradition can add bundles of the spirit of joy to your families.

Keep Reading... Show less

Fall Weather Must-Haves

Put away the swim suits and your favorite high-waisted shorts!


The transitional months of fall can cause some fashion headaches as you try to figure out what clothing to keep in your closet. With limited amount of college living space and the ever-unpredictable Nebraska weather, sometimes it’s difficult to know what should be taking up that precious closet space as you transition into winter. As you pack away those tanks and shorts for the chilly months ahead, get your closet ready with a few Fall must-haves. 

Keep Reading... Show less
Content Inspiration

Top 3 Response Articles of This Week

Take a look at the articles driving big conversations on Odyssey.


At Odyssey, we're on a mission to encourage constructive discourse on the Internet. That's why we created the response button you can find at the bottom of every article.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments