How did you get into yoga?
JF: Well, I first started getting interested in it when I was swimming in college and I was having some injuries and feeling like I needed to do something to help my body and so I asked my mom for a DVD, it was before DVDs, it was a VHS, for Christmas. And so she gave me a three-set yoga thing from Yoga Journal and I was instantly hooked. After my first practice, I couldn’t get out of bed, I was so sore. But I didn’t care, I was instantly hooked. That was in 1992.
What made you fall in love with yoga?
JF: The mind, body, spirit connection. I felt it instantaneously. I feel that with different types of exercise, but nothing like I experienced when I got on the mat. It’s a combination of so many different things that fed me in different ways–not just exercise.
What do you feel are the benefits of yoga?
JF: Well, I think it really helps you get to know your body–you teach yourself how to be present in your body and you learn how your body is capable of moving and where your boundaries live so you don’t overdo it. Yoga is there for you no matter what your level of ability or even your knowledge of yoga. I still feel like a beginner 26 years later! It’s not overwhelming, you can slip into the stream anywhere along the way. It’s so good for your body–you can get flexible, strong, aware, and gain confidence and humility. I feel free and grounded in my body. It’s not intimidating–it meets you where you’re at.
What makes you enjoy teaching yoga at the J?
JF: I teach yoga all over town, but the J is my favorite place to teach–and it’s all because of the people. What I love about the J in general is that it’s not just a Fitness Center, it’s not just an isolated community center–it’s a beautiful place where everyone is welcome, yet it has this quality of community that I’ve never felt before. There’s room for everybody, there have been people who have been coming to my class for decades and I feel like it’s this very authentic place where people can be themselves and work on themselves and there’s not judgement, no expectations–I love it here. It’s a lovely place.
And we love you, Jenny. Thank you for all you do within our community!