“When I do yoga, pain and bad thoughts disappear”

As soon as she walks through the doors of Omi Ondaretta Yoga School in Donostia, Sandra Martins kicks off her shoes, grabs a mat and blanket and lies down in Shavasana pose, or in other words, relaxes. Keep your face up and close your eyes. This is your time. You are required to set aside an hour every Wednesday for “almost” three years to “stretch your body and not think about anything else.” She has fibromyalgia and is a member of the Why Not Foundation, which works to improve the quality of life of people with mental illness and their families. He joined the association after a “suicide attempt”. When I was admitted to acute care, a very nice nurse introduced me to a woman who has become my colleague today. They told me about the foundation and I didn’t think twice,” he recalls while taking off his shoes. You can’t enter the street where it’s practiced.

After Savasana, teacher and practitioner Tania Cavada begins to guide the class, which also includes Jorge Davila and Jose Marie Corral. Sandra follows all the instructions perfectly to be able to do some of her favorite positions, such as the tree, the superman, or the bridge. “The moment I am in yoga, all the pain and bad thoughts remain outside, they disappear. I leave the class with renewed enthusiasm,” she admits. Ultimately, “Doing yoga helps me relax mentally, but I also learn to control my emotions. And physically, since I have fibromyalgia, I’m doing pretty well. “This is something that goes beyond posture.”

That’s exactly why he didn’t miss his weekly appointment even when he had corneal surgery several months ago. During those classes “I didn’t do anything, just stay in relaxed postures, but I left with another, more positive feeling in my body. Whenever I come to school – to yoga – I leave free and happy, encouraged,” she muses, exploring her right foot with her hands before coming into a balancing pose. And she continues to explain what yoga means to her, which is “healing for the soul and body. Of course, sometimes I have some sore spots the next day, but I recommend it to everyone,” she says. Says laughing. “Yoga frees me,” he insists. Thanks to the Why Not Foundation, he came to the practice, which has given him back “the will to live.” And that’s what they’re looking for with the “Activities that Report Well-Being” unit, linking to Why Not?

“We want them to stop, breathe, and get in touch with their bodies, plus the mobility that yoga gives them.”

Tania Cavada

Yoga teacher and therapist

Jorge and José Mari, users of Why Not, feel the same way about this practice, with whom, in addition to yoga, they do theater, croquet, dance and endless activities aimed at inspiring each person despite their various mental health problems. Have to get. , One. “I’m very relaxed at that hour,” says George, “especially when he does bat pose.” Facing downwards, he hangs himself from the swing on the wall and allows himself to fall. “I feel so calm when I do this and I notice how my circulation improves because it’s an inverted position,” he explains. Balance and other “power poses” also help her, which have allowed her to “gain muscle and mobility.” But her favorite part is the end of class, when she meets with her classmates to “drink wine” and “talk about yoga and life in general.” “We have formed a very close relationship.”

Among those friends is Jose Mari, who has been practicing yoga for four years. “I have come happy. We do basic exercises – with the help of a chair – but they help me a lot to feel better,” Sandra and George agree. “Physically and mentally I am relaxed after class” at Omi Ondareta, where in addition to offering adapted yoga they have another range of styles for those who want to go deeper into the practice of yoga. From Hatha and Iyengar, where it is practiced with various supports such as belts or blocks, to Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, which is a more dynamic style than the other two. Be that as it may, what is discovered in all those classes is “peace in the body” that “balances the mind,” he tells the school.

“Yoga has freed me and the Why Not Foundation, with activities like this, has given me back the will to live”

sandra martins

have mental illness

This is exactly one of the objectives that Professor Tania wants. We want them to stop, breathe, and get in touch with their bodies. A lot of times they come to class and just want to lay on the mat, but that’s also what yoga is about, listening to ourselves and knowing what we can do every day. And then there’s mobility in both the spine and the limbs,” he explains, “in addition to the autonomy this practice gives them.” Each day one of them leads Surya Namaskar, a sequence of standing postures. Which usually opens yoga classes. “And it’s very enriching.”

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