A journey starts with the first step, but it is the path that brings adventure.
2020 has been a year. We’ll leave it at that. But if it has taught us anything, it has taught us the importance of personal well-being and the well-being of our community. And, it has reminded us to extend kindness to ourselves and to others, for we are each facing new, different, and untold realities.
And this is why we feel it is more important than ever to continue the journey we started in 2018 and keep growing our vision that embraces the true essence of yoga ensuring our cOMmunity thrives. This continued journey is more than creating a new studio to simply get on your mat; it’s about creating a place that opens its doors to every person and offers a 360-degree approach to wellness for the mind, body, and spirit.
It is a vision that is now Giving Tree Center for Yoga and Wellness. You might have seen the new logo!
Giving Tree Yoga + Wellness is a brainchild of Founder and co-owner Melissa Lopez, born from a place of authenticity and a desire to share the gift of a complete yoga practice that is accessible, inclusive and sustainable. Our goal is to bring balance, harmony, and intention to people’s lives while expanding the mindset of wellness from something that is singular to something that is always evolving.
The expanse that is yoga and its role in wellness.
To share insight into our vision, let’s start by talking about what yoga is, what it’s not, and who it’s for.
Yoga is for YOU. Yes, You. Because Yoga is for E-V-E-R-Y-O-N-E.
It doesn’t discriminate or judge. It wasn’t invented for a certain body type, and you don’t need a specific brand of clothing to be able to do it. It’s not a fad or a trend. It’s actually been around for quite some time. You don’t have to be vegetarian or vegan, or practicing a certain religion or anything for that matter. It’s not about achieving a perfect pose, or a fashion show. It’s not a competition or about breaking a sweat….although if you’re doing a vinyasa flow that might happen.
Nope, all of these things are misconceptions. Although some of them have developed out of various yoga principles. For example, being a vegetarian or a vegan. The first of the five Yamas, the yoga principles centered on social ethics, is Ahimsa, which translates to non-violence or the act of not causing harm to any living being. Hence, the notion is born that yogis don’t eat meat. While this might be true for some, it’s not true for all, which is another topic for another day. But you get the gist.
The western-world has also helped to foster some of these misconceptions. Here in the U.S., yoga focuses a lot on the physical aspects of the practice. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but it has created a yoga culture around doing poses because it looks cool.
Yoga is more than a physical practice, and it’s not about how something looks; rather it’s about how it F-E-E-L-S...to you...whether that is a physical posture or movement, or a state of being. Yoga is a mindset and a way of life. And, it’s not a one size fits all. Yoga allows you to embrace and encourage the beauty of your own uniqueness.
Yoga is about creating unity between the mind, body and spirit. It combines principles along with practices of breathwork (pranayama), physical postures (asanas) and meditation (a calming or quieting of the mind) to find balance, peace, and an inner wisdom and state of harmony that we all possess.
Yoga is not a one and done solution. It is a continual practice of patience and learning to let go. It is about seeking, not a destination, but a journey that encompasses our total well-being.
“It’s the journey of you on your mat and losing the ego to go inside, discovering your true authentic self ."
- Michelle Stein
The opportunities for a 360-degree approach.
As we embark on the next phase of our journey, we are excited to support you on your path through yoga and wellness. The new expanded space has been designed to help restore and renew the mind, body, and spirit whether that be through a physical yoga practice or meditation; a deepening of your yogic knowledge; a dedicated wellness plan such as yoga therapy, health, life and nutrition coaching, massage, sound therapy or Reiki; or some combination of the above.
Giving Tree Yoga + Wellness is about bringing together all of these elements, so you can live your best life. It combines a studio, school and wellness center all in one space.
Giving Tree Yoga Studio
Practice in-depth and focused yoga experiences through instructor-led classes and workshops in the Hatha-based yoga style, including asana (posture), pranayama (breathwork) and meditation. Enjoy two studio spaces to find your harmony and tranquility.
Giving Tree School of Yoga
Deepen your knowledge through learning programs designed for both the professional and student practitioner. Immersive and transformative education for Yoga Professionals with CEUs across topics in yoga, meditation, anatomy and accessibility. For non-professionals and those who want to expand beyond a physical practice, increase your awareness from the philosophical realm to meditation and self-development.
Giving Tree Center of Wellness
Take a 360-degree approach to wellness that transforms and inspires you to live your best life focusing on the whole body, mind, and spirit with Yoga as the therapeutic tool. Enhanced programs offered to support varying abilities and ailments.
It is our passion for yoga and the love for our cOMmunity that inspires and fuels us to ignite this next chapter for Giving Tree. We hope you are as excited as we are.
With love and gratitude,
Melissa Lopez & Michelle Stein