Inspired Yogi…What’s Your Story? 
June 28, 2017

Cheryl Soresi 

PHOTOS BY – GREG SCOTT, THE FOREVER YOGI

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Inspired Yogi…What’s Your Story? 
July 22, 2016

Parnie Harger


How long have you practiced Yoga? How often per week?  I have practiced yoga inconsistently for many years, but never stuck with it long-term. This summer, I started an exchange with a yoga studio and am attending classes 1-3 times a week in an effort to commit to a continuing personal practice and progress as a beginner.

What made you decide to practice Yoga? I have never been a competitive athlete or enthusiastic about sports. After health issues interrupted my normal fitness habits for several years, I found getting back into a routine quite intimidating and uninspired. Nothing quite motivated me to get back on track, but my mind and body increasingly told me that I needed to do so. As life and adulthood gets busier and more stressful, I am drawn to yoga mainly by the non-judgmental atmosphere in which I can work to challenge myself physically. I also appreciate the chance for fulfillment that yoga provides at this juncture in my life through restoration, stillness, and mind-body awareness

What do you like about practicing Yoga at National Harbor?  Having just visited for the weekend (and on my 31st birthday!), it was lovely to be outdoors in a new yoga environment and start off the morning with purposeful reflection and movement as I began the next year of my life. 

What is your favorite Yoga pose and why is it your favorite?  There is something about reclining goddess pose that is just the pinnacle of full physical, mental, and emotional centering for me in my restorative practice. The thigh stretch and hip-opening feels perfect every time. 

Describe how Yoga has enhanced or changed your life. Every time I successfully complete a yoga class, I walk away feeling stronger in body and mind. Though it is challenging for me physically, it is quickly shaping my idea of the kind of person I want to be and how I want to live my life. 

PHOTOS BY GREG SCOTT-THE FOREVER YOGI 

It’s a Wrap!  Final YMCA Yoga Session
July 6, 2015

When I think of the last 10 years of teaching at the YMCA, one word comes to mind: MAGIC! There have been so many magical moments in class for me and hopefully for my students as well! Life is about making connections, sharing, and appreciating and the Y has allowed me to do just that for the last 10 years. I am grateful for all the connections I have made with my students who are not just students but amazing friends! Thank you for allowing me to teach you and don’t waste but a moment on sadness! The energy of sadness doesn’t serve us Yogis…we   know where home is and it has nothing to do with a building, a classroom or a location. I know, without a doubt, that connections will continue to be made and something new and amazing will come out of it! 

Check out these beautiful pictures of the final Yoga class…

  

  

  

  

2014 SUMMER YOGA AT NATIONAL HARBOR!
October 23, 2014

This video says it all! I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to share my passion for Yoga to the crowds that came out to National Harbor this summer. This video gave me the opportunity to highlight My Team and show them at their finest! GO TEAM!

SKYWARD YOGA!
October 20, 2014

Who doesn’t look at the sky and regard it with wonder? The vastness of it, the amazing colors, the fluffy, floating clouds… The beauty of the sky coupled with a body forming the shape of a yoga pose is a combination that can’t be beat! Over the past four years Team Photographer Greg has captured some of the most amazing Yoga images with the sky as the backdrop and me and my students as models. I’ve collected a few of my favorite shots in this blog. Once again, I am in awe of Greg’s talent at capturing a great shot and at how beautiful my students look posing for them…truly magical!

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PHOTOS BY GREG-THE FOREVER YOGI

INSPIRED YOGI…WHAT’S YOUR STORY?
October 3, 2014

Teresa Duke

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How long have you practiced Yoga? How often per week? I have been practicing different styles of Yoga on and off for 30 years. It would be anywhere between 2 -5 times per week.

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What made you decide to practice Yoga? I started with the Jane Fonda Yoga video to keep in shape and build endurance. I then progressed to Hatha Yoga that through the poses, I could meditate and pray. As a result of this practice I became more relaxed, centered and mindful. Next came Siddha Yoga which became my spiritual path. The practice helped me to become aware of my inner self and the world around me. It led to finding divinity in everything I see and everyone I meet. I was then introduced to Bikram Yoga through a friend in which I learned 26 poses in 105 degrees. The heat helped me to do my postures optimally.

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What do you like about practicing Yoga at Fort Washington Park? Doing yoga in a historical setting overlooking the Potomac at sunset. During Cathy’s direction through the Yoga session being able to hear the silence and feel the wind caressing your face. I would say it is being at peace.

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What is your favorite Yoga pose and why is it your favorite? I would pick the Tree Pose. It helps with the alignment of the head, spine and hips. This than leads to feeling very centered and balanced. You connect with the earth and the sky.

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Describe how Yoga has enhanced or changed your life: Here are just a few examples of how Yoga has enhanced my life: strengthening and toning my body, relaxation, deep breathing, slowing down, releasing tension, being in tune with the universe, inner peace, balance and happiness. I came to Ft. Washington recently and was actively looking for a Yoga instructor and found Cathy online. After my first class I was hooked. Thank you so much for being a part of my life.
Namaste, Teresa

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PHOTOS BY GREG – THE FOREVER YOGI

INSPIRED YOGI..WHAT’S YOUR STORY?
September 26, 2014

Lauren Dwyer

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How long have you practiced yoga? How often per week? I started practicing Yoga in 2010. It started out in the gym as a way to switch up my work out. I soon realized that Yoga was more than a physical practice. Before long, I was practicing 3-4 times per week.

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What made you decide to practice Yoga? I was looking for muscle confusion and had no idea it would be life-changing!

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What do you like about practicing Yoga at National Harbor? I like practicing at National Harbor because it’s beautiful for one thing. There are also lots of new and interesting people. The sunsets can be amazing! While some people find the extra noise a challenge, I have learned to incorporate it into the meditation practice. The sounds are the sounds of life – people, interaction, crying babies, nature, capitalism, etc., all at once! I have learned to treat it as the background music of life and now I love it.

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What is your favorite yoga pose and why is it your favorite? Wild Thing is my favorite pose. I love it because it is a full body stretch and still strength-based. I think it is feminine and beautiful while still powerful in appearance.

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Describe how Yoga has enhanced or changed your life: It may sound extreme, but Yoga has made me a better person. In addition to feeling healthier, stronger, and with better physical balance, my mind is also more balanced. My mind, breath and body are connected. I can control my own stress levels and better manage how outside influences impact me. I am more likely to think before reacting and it helps me to be kind and patient with those around me. Practicing Yoga lets me interact with the world in a better way!

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PHOTOS BY GREG…THE FOREVER YOGI

INSPIRED YOGI…WHAT’S YOUR STORY?
September 18, 2014

Lisa H-Johnson

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How long have you practiced Yoga? How often per week? I have been practicing Yoga for about a year now. I had thought of trying it through the years and even managed to register for an intro class through the county in 2006. However, this was yet another example of my OCD (Oddly Competitive Disorder). Who would sign up for a yoga class 2 weeks post OP from having a titanium plate and six screws put in their neck…I would. The intake form at registration class indicated any recent surgeries to which I answered yes……needless to say I was dropped. So indeed the next opportunity would present itself when my sister said, ”Hey did you know there is free Yoga at the National Harbor?” I tried it last summer and started going religiously. My favorite instructor by far was Cathy; it was like my mini challenge with myself to try to do everything and with a major sweat as well. I even ran my first 5K last fall! I now am a devoted Cathi-ite, having followed her to her classes at the Fort Washington YMCA. Due to thigh injury last December, I have mellowed back to 1-2 classes a week. It’s rough to nurse a leg injury and try to keep up, very rough. But there is so much more that Cathy’s instruction is bringing me…it’s a mental challenge as well as a challenge for the body, but also a sense of much needed inner peace.

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What made you decide to practice Yoga? The initial interest was general curiosity in 2006 (which would remain unfulfilled). However in 2010, I had the luxury of seeing an executive coach through my company. What’s an executive coach?…A high priced psychologist who works with business executives to capitalize on their best attributes and leadership style. Hmmmm…I think this guy took it a bit further. In a few weeks, he deduced that the impact of both my personal and work life, led to a level of self-compartmentalization of which he had never seen before. He proceeded to walk me through my first chakra exercise (very interesting indeed). And he strongly suggested that I would benefit greatly from Yoga. I learned a great deal from this individual and vowed that I would indeed try it.

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What do you like about practicing Yoga at National Harbor? Where else in the DMV area would be better? If someone had said 15 years ago, I would be “doing yoga” in good ole’ Oxon Hill, I would have laughed for 20 mins. I am soooo very proud of what my county has done with the National Harbor project and support it endlessly though (business meetings, dinners, lunches, family parties, events and YOGA). My son and I had the best time attending the FIFA World Cup events at the Harbor. Again, where else would be better? Second of course are the Fort Washington YMCA and other events as planned by Cathy (always in beautiful locations)
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What is your favorite Yoga pose and why is it your favorite? I think all of the poses are beautiful, having both spiritual purpose and definition but overall I would have to say any pose that intends to protect, deflect and ward off any threats (be it physical, mental, self-imposed). Warrior poses, any standing poses with hand positioning suggesting confidence and the rejection of fear. I have found that when Cathy is instructing to the class during our flows and positioning, that those are the words which resonate with me…sometimes I don’t even know I need the mental release but it comes naturally with Yoga. The pain of Yoga is real, especially if I am really challenging my body, but the mental reward is very fulfilling for me.

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Describe how Yoga has enhanced or changed your life: Yoga has been my $250.00 an hour therapist!! I didn’t think I needed one but it would appear it has greatly enhanced my spiritual wellness. I use the word spiritual because I needed to connect with myself in a language Lisa could understand. I am a very driven person, somewhat over confident by nature. So I needed something to ground, challenge and intentionally force me to calm myself. Appreciate Lisa. I have always been a strong person, but I needed to be able to turn the inner volume down and listen to my inner thoughts. By doing so, I have been provided an insurmountable internal support system; one that I can rely on immensely. I have ended a 28-year marriage, stood my ground with many disruptive forces and I feel extremely optimistic every day. This inner peace is a direct result of Yoga! Thanks Cathy!

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PHOTOS BY GREG…THE FOREVER YOGI

INSPIRED YOGI…WHAT’S YOUR STORY?
September 18, 2014

Julie (Jewelz) Whipple

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How long have you practiced yoga? How often per week? Tried my first class in college in 2007, after much convincing by a girlfriend; practiced on my own off and on from 2008-2013 when I started regularly attending the free classes with Cathy at the Harbor and have been practicing 1-3 times per week since May 2013.

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What made you decide to practice Yoga? I initially tried it as a relaxation aid during mid-terms in college, but have found that it helps me deal with anxiety, depression, and epilepsy symptoms.

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What do you like about practicing Yoga at Fort Washington Park? It offers both breath-taking scenic views and a unique setting.

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What is your favorite yoga pose and why is it your favorite? Bird of Paradise or Wheel Pose. They each offer their own unique challenges; Bird of Paradise I had to practice for a few months before I could actually do it, so I felt accomplished when I finally could complete it. I enjoy the back-bending aspect of Wheel Pose and how it can make you see things from literally, a whole new perspective.

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Describe how Yoga has enhanced or changed your life: Yoga has helped me to accept myself, including all the flaws, imperfections, and mistakes as part of a unique whole. Life almost never goes as planned, but by making the connection between mind and body that yoga has led me to, I have found myself being able to reach into inner strength and abilities that I didn’t even know I possessed prior to practicing on a regular basis.

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PHOTOS BY GREG…THE FOREVER YOGI

INSPIRED YOGI…WHAT’S YOUR STORY?
September 11, 2014

Christine Barron

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How long have you practiced Yoga? How often per week? I have been practicing Yoga for the better part of three months! Yoga has been recommended to me by friends and family for quite some time, however I never tried it out until June of this year. I enjoy practicing about twice a week with Cathy, and I am looking to practice three days a week.

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What made you decide to practice yoga? My friend discovered that the National Harbor was offering free Yoga classes on Tuesdays through out the summer months, and invited me to join her. I instantly began to love coming out every week. I have a debilitating back injury that had restricted my ability to do traditional forms of exercise, which promoted me to try Yoga. It has allowed me to work on strength building in my back, without re-injury.

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What do you like most about practicing Yoga at the National Harbor? In addition to the National Harbor being very convenient, the Waterfront creates a great atmosphere and perfect setting for meditation and reflection.

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What is your favorite Yoga pose and why is it your favorite? My favorite Yoga pose has to be the Camatkarasana (Wild Thing) Pose. It really helps with strengthening and stretching my back all while it improves my spinal flexibility. I love when Cathy incorporates it into her routine.

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Describe how Yoga has enhanced or changed your life? I feel like I really have a new lease on life. My back pain as significantly subsided, allowing me to regain flexibility. Cathy’s classes have been a lifesaver! I hope to continue to learn and work towards Yoga on an advanced level.

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PHOTOS BY GREG…THE FOREVER YOGI

WHAT’S YOUR YOGA STORY?…CLICK HERE