Over the past few months, we’ve added some strength training options to the Samudra offerings. Many of our students and instructors practice strength in addition to yoga as another mindful way to connect to body and breath and see so much benefit from using both modalities! This month, we chatted with Alaina about how strength has made a difference for her.
What made you decide to add strength training to your practice?
I’ve always really enjoyed sports and physical activity but was never really ‘athletic’. I really preferred the social aspects of sports but was never super fast or agile or coordinated. The one thing I always felt I was ‘good’ at was being strong. As I get older I have recognized that there isn’t time to do things that I don’t love. Strength training is something I love. It makes me feel powerful and athletic – which are not things that I used to I feel very often. 
What’s one thing you have noticed a change in since you began? 
I’m much more confident than I used to be. I’m more confident to wear my clothes, more confident to try new things in yoga, more confident when I play golf or go on a hike. The consistency of strength training has been a key element to that. I feel myself making progress each week and recognizing what I’m capable of. 
How does your lifting support your yoga?
I use my blocks when I need them! I never thought this would be a result of strength training but it has been. I no longer feel nervous about using assistance when I’m trying to learn something or do something new. I no longer think about if someone is looking at me or feel like I need to ‘keep up’. It also has helped me *actually* take the optional vinyasas because I want to continue to work toward a high-low pushup. 
How does your lifting support your life? 
I say yes more. I don’t worry about being the biggest person in a fitness class, having a mismatched outfit, or trying something new. I may not be fast or agile but I do know that I’m strong. That is what I’m good at and I’m continuing to build toward that which gives me confidence in the rest of my life. 
What does empowerment mean to you?
For a long time, I thought empowerment meant being able to advocate and stand up for others. I would consider myself empowering because hyping someone else up comes really easily to me. I now recognize that advocating for others is the EASY part. Empowerment is about being able to support yourself while also lifting up others. 
Anything else to share? 
Strength training makes me feel like an absolute badass. It puts me in an awesome mood and has positively impacted innumerable aspects of my life. 

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