Yoga for Hope 2011

Jennifer Isaacson, Dora Gyarmati, Steve Gold, JL Chiemingo, Cosetta Romani

On July 9th, I participated in the 3rd annual Yoga for Hope event, at Seattle Center. Yoga for Hope benefits City of Hope (a comprehensive cancer care center). Local teachers Jenniferlyn Chiemingo, Dora Gyarmati, Jennifer Isaacson, and Cosetta Romani taught at this years event (all 4 are returning teachers from last year). We enjoyed live music from Steve Gold and his band, Stoned on Shiva, while we practiced. I dedicated my practice to my Aunt Noreen, who is battling colon cancer. There were roughly 400 yogis in attendance, raising over $40,000 for City of Hope!

We started off lying on our backs, before Jenniferlyn Chiemingo led us through some basic sun salutations. Dora Gyarmati amped it up with some core work and held warrior poses. We also transitioned between numerous balancing poses on each side. One funny thing I remember was going into Extended hand-to-Big Toe pose (Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana) and Sean, practicing to my right, holding my foot up for me. As soon as he let go though, I lost my balance. Lol!

Jennifer Isaacson flowed with backbends, heart openers, and hip openers (including mermaid pose, Eka Pada Rajakapotasana). We also did a lot of twists. Cosetta Romani loosened us up with some dancing and movement. Fun! She had us chant along with Steve Gold as we practiced our bridge and wheel poses. She let us do our own yoga for several minutes- whatever our body needed. Then we headed into a relaxing shavasana.

At first, I didn’t pay much attention to Steve Gold’s music, not because it wasn’t good, but because I tend to tune out the music during yoga practice and concentrate on my breath. Most of the time, the soundtrack compliments the practice instead of distracting me. As Yoga for Hope continued, I heard Steve Gold playing off of and interacting with the teachers, which was pretty cool! I’ve never practiced to live music before and it was a neat experience! Steve Gold’s music definitely complimented the practice!

I’ve been blessed to be able to attend all three Yoga for Hope events and this year’s was by far my favorite! It was an amazing, freeing experience, under the warm sun! The teachers all brought their own style and creativity to the yoga. It was inspiring. I felt blissed out afterwards (the best kind of high)! I think I practically floated out of there. Gratitude for being a part of such an amazing event and yoga community! It was so good to see and practice with some of my yogi peeps! Looking forward to Yoga for Hope 2012!

See some video footage here and here.



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