When it comes to teaching yoga, Armstrong’s newest instructor, Stori Springman, knows that it is more than just about getting in shape. It is truly a way of life.
“We had a studio in Pooler and people would leave their shoes there. Yoga brain is a real thing,” Springman said.
Stori Springman (middle) leading an afternoon yoga class in the Armstrong Recreation Center Tuesday March 29, 2016
Springman began practicing yoga at age 16 after a severe knee injury ended her time figure skating. She can certainly attest to yoga’s therapeutic properties. After suffering her knee injury, Springman found it difficult to find a workout that suited her. She even slipped into an eating disorder until her doctor recommended yoga.
“I had an eating disorder in high school, and part of my therapy was yoga and Pilates. I always felt better after yoga than other workouts; I felt calmed and centered.”
After recovering from her eating disorder, Springman, a recent graduate of Savannah yoga center’s 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training program, knew yoga was a career she wanted to pursue. Yoga, however, provides more for Springman than just a career of physical activity. It provides a safe environment for self-expression, not just for herself, but for all those involved.
“There’s something about a yoga class that makes you feel safe,” she explains. “That’s what I want to create for people: an [environment] where they could move the way they move and feel comfortable in their own bodies.”
Without this safe environment, Springman feels people would be unwilling to push themselves to and, in some cases, past their boundaries.
“What I like about yoga is that you push the boundaries of what the body would normally do. That’s the goal is to feel comfortable in all of the awkward shapes that you are making.”
Springman, while acknowledging correct posture is important, urges yoga beginners to not worry too much about what their poses look like. “No matter what that looks like, we all feel the same thing there. As long as you’re doing the pose right, it doesn’t matter what that looks like, as long as it feels good to you.”
Springman is currently offering a Vinyasa flow class, yoga where the warmup and cooldown are based around stretching the muscles groups used in the main pose, and other beginner and intermediate classes. As an Armstrong student, yoga classes can be taken for credit or a group fitness exercise offered at Armstrong’s recreation center.