Dear Virtual Yoga Teacher,
You don’t know me, but boy do I sure know you.
I discovered your channel early in the pandemic, shortly after I moved back into my parents’ place. Now I have all forty-one of your videos memorized. (“Power Flow,” “Fiery Flow to Process,” and “Processing Flow of Fiery Power” are my favourites.) I know every sequence of poses. I know every playlist of background music. I know the places where your breathing quickens, where your voice falters, where you tuck stray wisps of hair behind your ears.
So, yeah. I’m a fan.
Your videos have made me limber and strong. You taught me how to achieve optimal engagement of the abdominals during Cat-Cow. And now I can finally hold Crow Pose for more than half a second without face-planting. Most importantly, you’ve taught me how to deal with the chaos inside my head.
I don’t have anxiety; anxiety has me. It has chewed and swallowed me, and now I rest in its belly, melting in its gastric juices. Seriously—it’s like that. Or rather, it used to be.
Whenever I have to check my voicemails or merge during rush hour or face any of life’s other quotidian terrors, I picture your peaceful half-smile and remember the breathing techniques you taught me. One breath into the belly, another up into the chest, then out through the lips. In, up, out. In, up, out.
I see you sometimes when I’m trying to fall asleep at night or typing work emails and trying not to sound angry. There you are, chilling in Lotus Pose on your yoga mat, wearing forest-green leggings and one of your cool, probably-two-hundred-dollar racerback sports bras. Your voice comes to me—Soothe the nervous system, you say—and I know I will survive. Thank you.
I do have a few small criticisms. You forgot to repeat Eagle Pose on the left side during your “Vinyasa Flow to Reset” class. And during your “Yoga Fusion to Release” video, you made me hold that Plank Pose for fifty-seven seconds, not sixty.
But these faults are trivial compared to what you’ve given me. On my computer screen, you’re only four inches tall; in my heart, you’re a giant.
Sometimes I wonder where you are in the world and what you’re doing. Right now, for instance—are you eating a bowl of cereal? Steeping a cup of tea? Shampooing your hair? According to your Instagram, you live in LA, so maybe you’re surfing or sitting in traffic. Wherever you are, you probably smell like oranges and sunblock.
Not that I think about that kind of thing.
See you tomorrow,