Urban Lotus Project
Jenn Schaeffer - ULP Teacher
I have always been active and interested in physical fitness. I took my first yoga class on a whim because it was the only group fitness class offered at my gym on a Tuesday that worked for my schedule, so I decided to give it a try. It was too slow; I was used to physical fitness involving an elevated heart rate and muscle toning. I was very inflexible and stretching hurt, my toes felt like they were miles away in my forward fold! I couldn’t grasp the benefit of savasana, how was I getting a workout just lying there?! There was something about the practice that came through in my first yoga session, however. There was a calm and a lightness that felt good in my body. I decided to keep going, I needed the flexibility anyway, and within a month I was hooked and knew that yoga would be apart of my life in a big way.
I’m so grateful that I stumbled upon yoga and I’m so grateful that the practice spoke to me the way it did all those years ago. Since then it has become my foundation. It taught me to breath through difficult situations that inevitably come up in life. It has taught me that there is always a new breath, a new moment, a new opportunity to be present; and that is everything.
Like everyone, I’ve been through challenges in life. Yoga has been my foundation through many hard situations. Just remembering to breathe and be present with what is happening in the surrounding environment puts one in the best personal space to interact with the world as it is. I am drawn to share what I’ve found in yoga with the ULP population of at-risk youth because I understand how yoga can help when times are tough. These kids are experiencing some tough times and I want to help, in a way that I can, and in a way I know how to help.
I teach yoga in the Reno community and I find ways to feel good every day. Sometimes that means hanging out with my two puppies Mukha and Lil Bit, sometimes it means learning a new song on my guitar, snowboarding, surfing, hiking, connecting with friends, reading and writing.
Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu
“May all beings everywhere be happy and free, and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life contribute in some way to that happiness and to that freedom for all.”