Frances Farmer

Yoga: A Way to Freedom

In blog, Mental/Emotional Health, Physical Health on November 13, 2013 at 6:00 am

Yoga is a way to freedom. By its constant practice, we can free ourselves from fear, anguish and loneliness.
-Indra Devi

How Yoga Transforms Lives

As a college student, I have to deal with a variety of stressors including tests, homework, and studying. Sometimes, it all seems to pile up and there’s nothing I can do but deal with it.

To aid in the battle against stress, yoga is my knight in shining armor. It prepares me for the day and keeps me calm and focused through my long to-do list, but don’t take it from me.

Listen to an expert on the subject. Stress Outlets had the honor of interviewing Valerie Kulaif,  a Centergy instructor at Gold’s Gym.

Centergy is a mix of yoga and pilates set to music.

 “This type of exercise is a place of solace and freedom for me.  There is no sense of competition and yet you are free to explore, through slower movement and deep breathing, areas where you can progress whether it be in flexibility, strength, mobility, and relaxation.”
-Valerie Kulaif


Valerie’s Story

Valerie Kulaif has been practicing mind/body exercise since 2005. (and yes, that’s her in the awesome picture above!)

She loved the refreshed feeling she experienced after leaving a yoga class. She wanted to share her experience with “everyone including males, females, young, old and of all fitness levels” to enjoy and relate to without getting tangled in the spiritual side of yoga that some might find offensive.

She found the perfect medium to do so through Gold’s Gym Group Centergy class where she teaches the mind/body exercise twice a week.

Valerie has reaped the health benefits of Centergy first-hand.

Benefits of Mind & Body Exercise


In addition,

“Centergy, as it relates to stress, teaches you how to breathe with movement to relieve muscle tension and create more length in the muscles.
“This initiates the parasympathetic nervous system to respond which is responsible for digestion, normalizing blood pressure, boosting immunity, and tells your body to relax.
“It also reduces cortisol levels, [which] measure stress.  It reduces physical stress using exercises that lengthen with no impact, which makes the muscles more effective, and reduces emotional and mental stress by using breathing techniques in a relaxed environment,” 

Valerie explained to Stress Outlets.


Bring Yoga into Your Life

Valerie encourages everyone to give Centergy or any mind/body exercise like yoga a try.

 “Centergy is designed for everyone. It’s just a matter of knowing what you can handle and just simply doing what you can at your own pace.”

You can begin implementing yoga in your life by heading to a local gym and attending a class or jumping in head-first and trying it solo with MyUniversalJoy, also nicknamed Joy Yoga.



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